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If you were accused of committing assault and battery, having an experienced attorney on your side to fight your charges is imperative.
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A conviction could result in jail or prison time and/or fines, and the punishments can have lasting consequences on your life, potentially affecting your ability to get a job, find housing, or qualify for certain government benefits. The prosecution will fight hard to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the offense. Being able to challenge the allegations made against you requires having the skills and knowledge to spot weaknesses in the other side’s evidence and argue such either during negotiations or at trial.
At Maria Jones Law Firm, we understand the seriousness of assault and battery charges and the impacts of a conviction. That is why we provide focused and dedicated defense to work toward a favorable outcome on your behalf. Our team has extensive experience practicing the law; we understand the processes and nuances of the legal system, and we know what it takes to get charges reduced or dropped.
We are ready to provide the professional legal service you need. Call us today at (602) 603-4032 for a free and confidential consultation.
What’s the Difference Between Assault and Battery?
Although often used together, assault and battery are two separate actions. Both involve causing or attempting to cause physical harm to another person, but the main difference between the two is that you could be charged with assault even if you didn’t actually touch the other individual. Generally, battery is the completion of an assault offense and is considered a more severe crime.
For example, if you intentionally swing a punch at someone else and miss, you are committing assault. However, if you make contact with the other’s face and causes serious physical injury, you are committing assault and battery.
How Is Assault and Battery Defined?
Arizona distinguishes between misdemeanor and felony assault.
Under A.R.S. 13-1203, 3 different types of conduct are considered assault. These include:
- Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing physical harm to someone else;
- Intentionally making another person fear that they are in danger of imminent physical injury; or
- Knowingly touching someone else to injure, insult, or provoke them
Aggravated assault is defined in A.R.S. 13-1204 as committing assault under specific circumstances.
Unlawful conduct that results in an aggravated assault charge includes committing assault:
- And causing serious physical injury to another
- While using a deadly weapon
- While using force that results in temporary but substantial:
- Loss or impairment of a body organ or part; or
- Fracture of any body part
- While the other person is bound, restrained, or impaired to the point that they can’t resist
- After entering another person’s private home
- Against a minor under 15 years of age and the actor is 18 years of age or older
- In violation of a protection order against the other individual
- And knowingly taking control of:
- A police officer’s firearm,
- Any other weapon used by a police officer, or
- Any device used by an officer to restrain or injure an individual
- While imprisoned or in custody, or against a person who works for the state department of corrections, the department of juvenile corrections, a law enforcement agency, or a county or city jail
- While using a simulated deadly weapon
What Are the Potential Penalties for Assault and Battery?
Assault is a misdemeanor offense.
The class of charge and penalties you face depend on the specifics of your circumstances:
Class 1 misdemeanor:
Intentionally or knowingly causing physical injury to someone else. A conviction results in up to 6 months in jail.
Class 2 misdemeanor:
Recklessly causing harm to someone else or placing them in fear of being injured. A conviction carries a jail sentence of up to 4 months
Class 3 misdemeanor:
Knowingly touching someone else to injure, insult, or provoke them. Conviction penalties include up to 30 days in jail.
Because it is considered more serious than assault, aggravated assault is charged as a felony. Again, the class depends on the conduct you are accused of engaging in.
The potential charges and penalties for battery are as follows:
Class 2 felony:
Causing physical injury to or using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument against a peace officer or prosecutor. A conviction results in a maximum prison term of 10 years
Class 3 felony:
Causing serious physical injury to another, using a deadly weapon, knowingly taking control of an officer’s firearm, or using a simulated deadly weapon. A conviction results in up to 7 years in prison
Class 4 felony:
Using force that causes temporary but substantial disfigurement, loss of limb, or fractured body part. A conviction carries up to 3 years in prison
Class 5 felony:
Taking control of any weapon (other than a firearm) belonging to an officer, committing assault while imprisoned or in custody or against a prison or jail worker, assaulting a peace officer or prosecutor. The maximum prison sentence for a conviction is 2 years
Class 6 felony:
Committing assault on someone who is bound or restrained; after entering a private home; on a person under 15 years of age; in violation of a protection order; against specific government, school or health care workers; or while taking an instrument used by an officer to restrain or injure a person. A conviction carries with it up to 1.5 years in prison
Discuss Your Case During a Free Consultation
If you were charged with assault and battery in Phoenix, consult with a skilled attorney as soon as possible. At Maria Jones Law Firm, our team will listen to your side of the story to develop a compelling legal strategy and fight charges.