The state of Texas takes aggravated assault charges very seriously. If you have been arrested and charged with this type of criminal offense, your freedom could literally be at stake. In this circumstance, it is normal to feel stressed out, overwhelmed and unsure of exactly what you should do next. The good news is that you do have legal resources available. Our criminal defense team is standing by, ready to fight for your rights.
At Rosenthal & Wadas, PLLC, our Collin County criminal defense attorneys have the legal experience and skill needed to defend aggravated assault charges. If you or a family member has been arrested for aggravated assault in Texas, you must get a top-rated legal advocate by your side immediately. Please contact our defense team today to request a fully confidential legal consultation.
Aggravated Assault under Texas Law
Unlike in many U.S. jurisdictions, the state of Texas does not consider assault and battery to be two separate criminal offenses. These violent acts all fit together, and all of these types of cases are charged as assault. When prosecutors believe that the circumstances warrant it, assault charges can be upgraded to aggravated assault charges, which is a more severe criminal offense. Under Section 22.02 of the Texas Penal Code, assault charges can be upgraded to aggravated assault charges if the defendant:
- Causes serious bodily harm to another person; or
- Uses or shows a deadly weapon in the course of committed an assault.
For the purposes of applying this statute to real-world cases, it is important to understand the precise definition of the term “serious bodily injury”. This definition can be found by referencing Section 1.07 of the Texas Penal Code. Notably, the term “bodily injury” is defined in a very broad manner. Any physical pain, illness or other significant impairment can qualify as a bodily injury under Texas’s criminal statute. A bodily injury becomes “serious bodily injury” when the defendant’s actions:
- Cause or create a significant risk of a fatality;
- Cause permanent disfigurement to the victim; or
- Cause long-term impairment to any of the victim’s body parts or organs.
Ultimately, Texas prosecutors are empowered to determine whether or not an injury is “serious” on a case-by-case basis. While necessary, this type of discretion creates conditions where prosecutors sometimes overcharge cases, attempting to lock a defendant up for aggravated assault when such a charge is not appropriate given the circumstances in question. This is one reason why all defendants need professional legal representation. Your criminal defense lawyer will protect you from unjust charges.
The Penalties for Aggravated Assault
If you have been charged with aggravated assault, you need to be aware of the fact that you could be facing severe penalties. Texas prosecutors will seek punishment in accordance with the specific facts of the case, and these penalties could include:
- Felony charges;
- Prison time, possibly up to 20 years;
- Up to $10,000 in fines; and
- A permanent black mark on your criminal record.
How Our Collin County Aggravated Assault Lawyers Can Help
We are committed to providing our clients with an aggressive legal defense. When we take on your case, we promise that you will always get individualized attention from one of our top-rated Texas criminal defense lawyers. Our team never leaves any stone unturned. From the very first moment you begin working with our firm, we will vigorously investigate the charges against you, gathering and assembling all relevant evidence so that we can provide the strongest possible defense on your behalf. With the full information in hand, our attorneys will:
- Hold law enforcement officials and prosecutors accountable, ensuring that your legal rights are never violated;
- Defend your case aggressively, seeking to get the charges dismissed if the prosecutors lack the evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt; and
- If necessary, negotiate with the other side in order to get your charges and punishment reduced to the greatest extent possible.
Contact Our Collin County Domestic Violence Attorneys Today
At Rosenthal & Wadas, PLLC, our top-rated criminal defense attorneys have deep experience defending aggravated assault charges. We are proud to be the only law firm in Collin County with two partners who have been officially certified by the Texas Criminal Law Board. If you were charged with aggravated assault, please contact us today at (972) 369-0577 to set up your free case evaluation. We represent clients all around Collin County, TX, including in Mckinney, Melissa, Lucas Plano and Frisco.