If you are accused of assault or aggravated assault, you’re now facing one of the most serious charges of your life. An assault conviction can impact employment, gun ownership rights, employment, housing rental, and your potential freedom.
In Texas, the definition of assault is very broad and covers a wide range of behavior. Punching someone in the face or hitting someone with an object constitutes assault. But did you know, you can be charged with assault even if you didn’t actually touch another person? For example, if you spit on someone, you can be charged with Class C misdemeanor assault. If you threaten to beat up someone while holding a bat, you could potentially be charged with a second-degree felony assault or even terroristic threat!
Simple assault is usually charged as a misdemeanor (Class A) if there is nothing more than a minor injury involved, it can still be punished by a penalty up to $4,000. If the prosecutor chooses to increase the charges to a more serious third-degree felony, you could be facing from twenty-four months to a decade in a Texas prison. Simple assault can often be turned into a third-degree felony when you committed the assault against a member of your family, if you knew the person was a governmental contractor or some type of public servant, or if you were aware the person was an emergency services employee or security guard. If only pushing or threats were involved, you could be charged with a misdemeanor (Class C), a more serious Class A misdemeanor if the assault was against an elderly person and a Class B misdemeanor if the victim was a person who officiates sports events.
If a weapon is involved, the penalties go up significantly. If you were charged with causing serious bodily damage or using a deadly weapon while committing an assault. If you commit aggravated assault with a weapon you could face second-degree felony charges which carry a penalty of from two to 20 years in a Texas prison and a fine as much as $10,000. Aggravated assault can turn into a first-degree felony when a weapon was used in the assault against a known public official, security guard, informant, witness to a crime, or in the case of domestic violence where there was a serious bodily injury. A first degree felony conviction for aggravated assault can lead to a sentence of five years to life in prison.
You must have a Houston Criminal Defense Attorney who is ready to mount an aggressive defense on your behalf. If you have been charged with the crime of assault contact Attorney Emily Shelton. Some typically-used defenses she can use include being intoxicated, acting in self-defense, stating the alleged victim consented, acting in protection of another, or lacking the required intention to commit battery.