Federal Defense Attorney Defines Crimes Against the President or Staff

The President of the United States is protected by the Secret Service and is also given special protections under the law. The staff of the president is also given special legal protections. Because of the important role that the president plays in U.S. government, anyone who acts violently towards the president or who makes threats of such violence can be charged with a serious federal offense. Those who breach restricted buildings or grounds where the president or his staff is located can also face criminal charges and potentially serious consequences.

If you’ve been accused of assassinating the president or his staff; assaulting the president or his staff; kidnapping the president or his staff; or behaving inappropriately with respect to restricted buildings or grounds, you could be charged with a federal crime that carries harsh penalties.

You need to take these charges seriously by reaching out to a federal criminal defense attorney who has the knowledge and experience to help you navigate the federal justice system.

LV Criminal Defense can help. Our legal team has decades of collective experience and we have successfully represented many clients in Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah, Oregon and surrounding areas who have been charged with federal offenses including those involving actions taken against the president and staff members.

To find out more about how our firm can assist you as you protect your future when facing serious charges, give us a call today.

Federal Laws On Assassinations or Assaults on the President or Presidential Staff

Federal laws that address acts of violence against the president or the staff of the president are found in 18 U.S. Code Chapter 84. A total of two statutes are found within the relevant chapter of the federal penal code. These include:

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  • 18 U.S. Code section 1751: Presidential and Presidential staff assassination, kidnapping, and assault; penalties
  • 18 U.S. Code section 1752: Restricted building or grounds

Each of these statutes has its own specific things that must be proved for a defendant to be convicted, as well as its own set of penalties.

For example, according to 18 U.S. Code section 1751, any person who kills the President of the United States, the President-elect, the Vice President, the Vice President Elect, or the person next in line in order of succession to the presidency of there is no Vice President can be penalized under 18 U.S. Code section 1111 and section 1112.

The same penalties established under section 1111 and section 1112 apply in circumstances where a defendant kills a person appointed by the President or any person who is employed in the Office of the President. Section 1111 is the statute defining murder and section 1112 is the statute defining manslaughter.

18 U.S. Code section 1751 also establishes a penalty for knowingly kidnapping the President, President-elect, Vice President, Vice President Elect, executive branch workers, and others identified within the statute.

The penalty for kidnapping a designated individual could be life imprisonment or could be death if the kidnapped individual is killed. Even attempted kidnapping of a designated individual could result in up to life imprisonment. And, if two or more people conspire to kill or kidnap individuals designated by this statute, and any person involved in the conspiracy does any overt act to advance the conspiracy, every co-conspirator could be punished by a term of imprisonment up to life in prison or by death if the kidnapped individual is killed.

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Penalties are also established for those who assault designated individuals, including the President, Vice President, or executive branch employees. Assault of one of these public officials could result in a fine and imprisonment for up to 10 years if the person who is assaulted is the President, Vice President, President or Vice President Elect, or person who is next in the line of succession. If the assaulted person is an executive branch employee, the maximum penalty for assault is one year imprisonment. However, in any circumstances where personal injury results to the victim or a dangerous weapon is used, then the defendant could be imprisoned for up to 10 years.

The statute defines the term President-elect and Vice-President-elect to include any persons who are the apparently successful candidates who will take the office of President or Vice President after winning a general election.

Finally, this statute gives the attorney general discretion to pay up to a $100,000 reward and establishes that an investigation into assault, kidnapping, or assassination can be undertaken by the FBI. If federal officials become involved, state laws are preempted – and federal officials also have extraterritorial jurisdiction so can pursue cases against individuals outside of the U.S.

LV Criminal Defense provides more insight into this offense as well as into specifically what prosecutors would need to prove in order for defendants to be convicted.

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Getting help from a Federal Criminal Attorney

If you have been accused of violating any of the provisions of Chapter 84 as a result of acts of violence against the president or the president’s staff, you should reach out to LV Criminal Defense as soon as possible. Our federal criminal defense lawyers have extensive experience representing defendants in California, Arizona, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, or surrounding areas who have been accused of committing federal offenses. We know the ins and outs of federal laws well and we can put our extensive knowledge of the federal penal code to work on your behalf.

Our legal team helps clients to develop a sound legal strategy given the nature of the charges they face and the extent of evidence against them. We work closely with every client we represent to determine the best approach to responding to charges and to proactively taking steps to try to minimize or avoid penalties.

This could include negotiating a plea agreement on your behalf or fighting for acquittal. To find out more about the ways in which our firm can help, give us a call today.