Houston Assault and Aggravated Assault Attorney

/Assault and Aggravated Assault
Assault and Aggravated Assault2018-04-15T10:41:51+00:00

The full text on Assault can be found in chapter 22 of the Texas Penal Code.

Assault-Bodily Injury

In Texas, Assault – Bodily Injury is charged as a Class A Misdemeanor.  The range of punishment is up to 1 year in the county jail and a fine of up to $4000.

A person commits the offense of Class A Assault if they intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly cause bodily injury to someone.  Bodily injury can be anything that causes pain.  There doesn’t actually have to be a visible mark.  So technically a “push” or “shove” that causes pain to someone can be charged as a Class A assault if the person who was pushed claims that they feel pain.

Every assault case is very different.  Sometimes the defense is that the incident did not happen.  When this is the case, we do the very best we can to show the holes and problems with the complainant’s story.  An individual who is lying has a very hard time keeping their story straight because it didn’t actually happen!  Unfortunately false accusations happen often, but fortunately for you, we have seen it enough times where its possible to show the DAs the holes in the case.

Other times self-defense is the defense we use on assault cases.  Many times individuals are charged with assault after a bar fight, or after someone they know attacks them first.  These cases end up being a big “he said, she said”.  Unfortunately, it’s typically the first person to contact police who becomes the “victim”.  But in Texas, if you can show your actions were self-defense, then your actions are justified.

“A person is justified in using force against another, when and to the degree the actor reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to protect the actor against the other’s use or attempted use of lawful force.”

At our firm we have had countless of clients who claim self-defense.  If you have any specific questions about your case contact me directly.

AGGRAVATED ASSAULT

In Texas aggravated assault is charged when someone is accused of committing an assault as listed above, and they either:

  1. Cause serious bodily injury to the person, OR
  2. Uses or exhibits a deadly weapon during the alleged assault

Serious bodily injury is bodily injury that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes death, serious permanent disfigurement, or loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.

WHAT IS AGGRAVATED ASSAULT WITH A DEADLY WEAPON IN TEXAS?

If you use a deadly weapon during as assault, then that is aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.  It doesn’t matter if the weapon actually injures someone or not.  Examples of cases I have seen before are cases where someone shoots at (but doesn’t actually hit someone) and where someone attempts to run over someone with a vehicle.  In Texas, a deadly weapon includes anything that in the manner of its use (or intended use) is capable of causing death or serious bodily injury.

This is a second degree felony, punishable 2-20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

WHAT IS AGGRAVATED ASSAULT WITH A DEADLY WEAPON BY THREAT IN TEXAS?

The most common example is displaying a firearm or a knife, placing another in fear of imminent bodily injury, but not actually using the “weapon”.  I have also seen cases where someone threatens to run someone over with a vehicle.

This is also a second degree felony where the punishment range is 2-20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

WHAT IS RECKLESS AGGRAVATED ASSAULT?

Recklessness is an act where someone doesn’t mean to harm another, but without regard for the outcome, causes serious bodily injury to someone.

The most typical example I have seen is someone recklessly cleaning/using/handling a firearm that goes off accidently and injures someone seriously.

This is also a second degree felony where the punishment range is 2-20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

WHEN IS AGGRAVATED ASSAULT CHARGED AS A 1ST DEGREE FELONY?

  1. The accused uses a deadly weapon, and causes serious bodily injury, and victim is a family member or someone that the accused had an intimate relationship with
  2. The accused knows the “victim” is a public servant engaged in his duties, or the assault is in retaliation for the public servant performing their duties
  3. The “victim” is someone who the defendant knew was a security officer engaged in their job
  4. The “victim” is a witness, or an informant who reported a crime
  5. The defendant is a public servant who is acting in his official capacity
  6. Drive by shooting, with reckless disregard as to whether the house/building/vehicle is occupied, or whether serious bodily injury was caused to the complainant

These 1st degree felonies carry a range of punishment of 5-99 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

HOW TO DEFEND AGGRAVATED ASSAULT

This is not an easy question to answer as every case is so different, but three traditional ways of defending aggravated assault are:

  1. Self Defense
  2. Defense of a Third Person
  3. Actual Innocence

Sometimes we can take cases to the Grand Jury, and provide evidence that we feel proves that there is not sufficient evidence to continue with this case.  The Grand Jury has the ability to refuse to indict someone and end the proceedings at that time.  If the Grand Jury decides to indict that is fine, the defenses listed above can continue as normal through the criminal district court.

Get a Free Consultation

Every assault case is different, so for specific questions, please feel free to contact me directly at 713-222-2828. You can also contact me about your assault case by filling in the following information. The first consultation is always free.