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Aggravated Assault Charges
Defense in Arizona

Assault is a crime in Arizona that can be charged by prosecutors in many different circumstances. However, almost regardless of these specific circumstances, aggravated assault presents a serious problem to anyone who faces the prospect of being investigated, arrested or prosecuted for this crime in AZ. If this situation relates to you or someone you love, you need the immediate help of a Phoenix criminal defense lawyer.

Below you’ll find information regarding the extensive statutory language that deals with aggravated assault in AZ. You’ll also find basic analysis and real-world examples of what type of conduct can lead to a charge of aggravated assault and the potential penalties. Finally, you’ll find information regarding how you should proceed if you or someone you love could be faced with the prospect of defending yourself against an allegation of aggravated assault in Arizona.

Statutory Analysis of
Aggravated Assault in Arizona

The laws surrounding aggravated assault in Arizona have expanded over time to include additional circumstances in which this charge can be brought against a defendant. Below you’ll find the basic AZ statutory definition of aggravated assault and the circumstances in which this charge can arise.

Definition of Assault in Arizona

Before describing aggravated assault, the foundation of that charge can be clarified by the definition of ‘basic’ assault in Arizona. The law states that assault is committed when a person:

• Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing any physical injury to another person; or
• Intentionally placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent physical injury; or
• Knowingly touching another person with the intent to injure, insult or provoke such person.

Aggravated Assault Circumstances

If the underlying conduct is present as defined above, prosecutors can charge a defendant with aggravated assault if certain circumstances are in place. A person commits aggravated assault if any of the circumstances below are present:

• The defendant causes serious bodily injury to the victim;

• The defendant uses a weapon or a dangerous instrument – weapons and dangerous instruments are loose terms, and weapons can include scissors and dangerous instruments can include vehicles.

• If the assault is committed after the defendant enters the private home of another with the intent of committing an assault;

• If the person is an adult who is 18 years old or older and the victim is 15 years old or younger;

• If the assault is committed by a defendant who knows or should know that the victim is a peace officer or someone acting under the direction of a peace officer during the course of conducting official duties;

• If the assault is committed against any teacher or school nurse, and this assault can occur on school grounds, in a school vehicle or even on other property if the victim was performing his or her duties at the time the assault occurred;

• If the person is in prison, jail or any other detention facility at the time and the victim is a person who is acting in an official capacity of that detention center when the assault occurs;

• If the assault occurs while the victim is bound or otherwise substantially prevented from defending him or herself while the assault is committed;

• If the assault is committed against any member of the fire department or against a paramedic who is acting in the course of official duties at the time;

• If the assault is committed against any professional health care professional unless the defendant is substantially mentally ill at the time the assault takes place;

• If the assault results in temporary but substantial disfigurement or in the loss of or impairment of an organ of the body.

As can be seen, these 11 different circumstances not only bring a charge of assault up to aggravated assault in Arizona, but there is also room for discretion and inclusion of many different situations by prosecutors to bring this charge.

Why Arizona Prosecutors
Would Charge Aggravated Assault

The reason that prosecutors would charge someone with aggravated assault instead of ‘simple’ assault is because the penalties for a conviction are more substantial. At a minimum, conviction for aggravated assault would be classified as a class 6 felony, and some are classified as class 3 and class 2 penalties. A conviction of ‘simple’ assault is a misdemeanor.

Therefore, if you face charges of aggravated assault in Arizona, you could face up to 15 years in prison in certain circumstances. Clearly, if you face this situation, you need to act now to begin the process of building a strong defense. Contact the Phoenix criminal defense lawyers at the Law Offices of David Raymond Wroblewski today to schedule an initial consultation.
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