Assault incidents can occur in a moment of powerful emotion or while you’re consumed by an intense fear for your safety. And while self-defense is not typically considered criminal, actually proving you acted in self-defense can be a challenge. Some assault cases involve elements that qualify as “aggravating” factors, resulting in a far more serious penalty.
Aggravated assault crimes are typically prosecuted as a serious felony in Texas, carrying the potential for jail time and serious fines. A felony conviction can make it challenging to get a job, rent an apartment, get an education and maintain your role as a productive member of the community. For this reason, it’s vital that you entrust your criminal case to an experienced assault defense lawyer with the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass.
Our law firm’s talented team of defense attorneys represent Texans who are facing charges such as aggravated assault and other serious violent crimes, like assault with a deadly weapon, attempted murder, manslaughter, sexual assault and homicide. Our legal team works with clients in Dallas County, Collin County, Denton County and beyond.
If you or a loved one stand accused of aggravated assault, contact the criminal defense lawyers with the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass. We are here to discuss your case in a fully confidential, no-cost consultation session. Just call (972) 422-9999.
Common Concerns When Facing Aggravated Assault Charges
Assault is a serious crime, but when that offense is elevated due to aggravating circumstances, you can find yourself facing decades in prison, particularly if you have a prior conviction.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, we believe it’s important to provide clients with information and insight into the nature of the charges that they’re facing. We have found that this can alleviate much of the worry and stress that you may be experiencing.
What is the Definition of Aggravated Assault in Texas?
To understand the crimes that fall under the classification of aggravated assault, you must first understand the state’s definition of assault. In Texas law, there are three methods for committing assault, including:
intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury to another person;
intentionally or knowingly threatening another with imminent bodily injury; or
intentionally or knowingly initiating physical contact with another person when there is reasonable cause to believe that the contact will be viewed as offensive and unwelcome.
Now, in order for a case to be considered aggravated assault, the incident must meet the criteria for assault, and it must meet the following criteria:
the act causes serious bodily injury to another person; or
the suspect used or exhibited a deadly weapon during the commission of the assault.
A case may also be subject to more serious penalties if the assault involves a child under age six, a public servant in the line of duty, a security officer or the victim is elderly or disabled.
State law defines “serious bodily injury” as an injury that poses a significant risk of death, disfigurement, permanent impairment or loss of function of a body part or organ.
According to Texas law, deadly weapons can include “a firearm or anything manifestly designed, made or adapted for the purpose of inflicting death or serious bodily injury; or anything that in the manner of its use or intended use is capable of causing death or serious bodily injury.”
The term can also be used to refer to an object that has a non-lethal usage, such as a baseball bat or tire iron. For an object to be considered a deadly weapon, you must actually use it as a weapon (i.e. striking another person with a tire iron), or there must be evidence that you intended to use it as a deadly weapon.
Some of the most common types of deadly weapons include:
knives, spears, and other bladed weapons;
knuckles or feet; or
batons or clubs.
One potential defense to aggravated assault surrounds the definition of a deadly weapon. If you can argue that the incident did not involve a deadly weapon, it may be possible to negotiate a charge downgrade or a dismissal of the charges entirely.
What if the Victim Wasn’t Injured?
An aggravated assault case involving the exhibition of a deadly weapon would not necessarily require the victim to suffer an injury.
So willfully initiating unwelcome and offensive contact, such as grabbing a person around the neck while wielding a knife could be prosecuted as an aggravated assault incident.
What is the Penalty for Aggravated Assault in Collin County?
There are a number of aggravated assault charges that may be filed, depending upon the nature of the victim and whether the victim suffered serious bodily injury.
Aggravated assault cases are typically prosecuted as felonies, and if convicted, it’s likely the individual may face prison time and fines of up to $10,000.
Trust Your Case to a Top Aggravated Assault Defense Lawyer
There have been cases where law enforcement has arrested a party for aggravated assault, even if an attack does not result in serious bodily harm or the alleged act of violence was committed without a dangerous weapon. So there are some cases that do not actually meet the criteria for the charge that has been filed.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, we work with experienced investigators who are focused on uncovering the series of events that occurred just before the alleged assault occurred. Whether a dispute occurred at your home, in a bar or at another public facility, we will work with available witnesses to understand the circumstances in your case. We will fight for the charges to be dismissed based on any false or contradictory details in the plaintiff’s story. We may also pursue a reduction in charges in some cases, particularly if you made a threat without committing physical violence. We have also been successful in proving that an individual acted in self-defense.
Each case is unique, so we take a personalized approach to developing every client’s defense strategy. Our firm was established by an attorney who has been defending Texas clients since 1993. Firm founder Attorney Jeffrey Grass has also served as a U.S. Navy Judge Advocate (JAG), and he was named one of the Top 100 Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Association. He also maintains an AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®.
With so much on the line, you can’t trust your case to just anyone. Turn to one of the most well-respected criminal defense attorneys in the Collin County area by contacting the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass. Our legal team looks forward to discussing your case in a free, fully confidential consultation. Call (972) 422-9999.