Aggravated assault is a more severe criminal charge than assault. At its core, aggravated assault is the exact same as assault, but it has additional conditions or factors that cause it to be a more serious crime. It is important to understand these factors that can elevate an assault crime so that you can put together a proper defense if you face aggravated assault charges.
According to the Arizona State Legislature, an assault charge may change to aggravated assault if the victim is someone working in an official capacity in certain fields, such as law enforcement, health care and education. You may also face this charge if you were in custody when the incident occurred.
The age of the victim can increase your charge if he or she is under the age of 15. Also, if you violate a protection order during the incident or entered someone else’s home with the intent to harm him or her, then that also bring aggravated assault charges.
Your assault charge may change to the more serious charge if you restrained the victim or if the victim has impaired capacity and could not resist or fight back.
Aggravated assault applies in any case where you used a deadly weapon or a simulated deadly weapon. It also is the charge when the incident causes serious physical harm, such as disfigurement, the loss or impairment of an organ or fractures to any body part.
There are many details to the law that takes a charge from a simple assault to aggravated assault. Knowing the law is the first step you should take after the court charges you with this crime.