Aggravated assault in Texas means that someone has caused critical or serious bodily injury to another individual—or was in immediate possession of a weapon like a firearm, knife, or club during an assault, even if it wasn’t discharged or used. As far as what is constituted by serious bodily injury, that refers to death, the risk of death, disfigurement, or even sustained impairment of a limb or organ. In Texas, perpetrators of aggravated assault can face two years up to two decades in prison, accompanied by a fine up to ten thousand dollars. Such an assault is considered a second degree felony, but if the assault is connected to specific circumstances like a case of domestic abuse, that second degree charge can become a first degree felony with potential life imprisonment.
Thankfully there are some ways to beat an aggravated assault charge that should definitely be explored with competent legal counsel. If someone acted violently against you or made threats of violence that were unprovoked, in Texas you have the right to self defense with reasonable and proportionate force. You also have a legal right to defend others from violence, and even, in some circumstances, to step in and stop a crime as it’s in progress. You are also allowed to defend your property such as your home or car under the Stand Your Ground Principle. As you can see, there are a number of ways in Texas to have an accusation of aggravated assault dropped by the prosecution. At the same time, it’s important to be aware that in Texas cases of domestic dispute, even if the victimized party decides to drop the aggravated assault component of their charges, the prosecution is not obligated to forgo pursuing these charges.
Working with a competent lawyer skilled in criminal defense can help you avoid charges of aggravated assault or present reasons to the prosecution that would facilitate overturning these charges, such as the aforementioned cases of self defense and standing your ground. If you’re facing such charges, working with Mr. Morin—who has over two decades of criminal law experience—can help you deflect these charges or minimize their punitive damage.