Aggravated Assault – A.R.S. § 13-1204
In Arizona Aggravated Assault results from a combination of a violation of misdemeanor assault A.R.S. § 13-1203 and additional elements found in A.R.S. § 13-1204.
Misdemeanor Assault is divided into 3 subsections
1. Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing a physical injury to another person. (Class 1 Misdemeanor)
Physical injury can be defined in a large number of ways. Some judges have found physical assault includes something as simple as redness on the face from being slapped. In fact, at least one judge has found that mere pain from being slapped with no physical showing of injury will suffice for a person to be found guilty.
2. Intentionally placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent physical injury. (Class 2 Misdemeanor)
An example of a violation of this form of assault would be if a person (person A) throws a brick, a rock, or an object at another person (person B). The object doesn’t hit the person B but flies past him/her. Person B seen the object coming at them and flinched or has to move out of the way from being hit and believed they were going to be hit. Person A can be charged and possibly found guilty of assault.
3. Knowingly touching another with the intent to injure, insult, or provoke them. (Class 3 Misdemeanor)
Simple Misdemeanor Assault can turn into a felony aggravated assault when:
- A person causes a serious physical injury to another
- A person uses a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument in the assault
- A person causes temporary substantial disfigurement, impairment of a body organ, or causes a fracture of any body part
- A person assaults another who is physically bound or their ability to resist is impaired
- A person goes to anthers house and assaults them in their own house
- A person 18 years old or older assaults a person 15 and under
- A person is under a protective court order and assaults the person who obtained that court order
- A person assaults an officer
- A person assaults a constable in the course of his/her duties
- A person assaults a firefighter, a teacher, a healthcare worker, a prosecutor, a code enforcement officer, a park ranger, a public defender, or a judge
- A person impedes the breathing of another
Several other factors exist in which a person can be charged with Aggravated Assault.
Mr. Thornley has extensive experience looking for and finding holes in the state’s case in both assault and aggravated assault cases. In many cases, a person is justified in their actions but it is necessary to have an attorney who knows when a justification defense is appropriate.