As opposed to simple assault, aggravated assault occurs when the amount of violence in an assault reaches a certain level of injury or the threat of injury could be significant.
For example, slapping a person across the face could be a simple assault, but using a gun, or threatening to use a gun could be construed as an aggravated assault. Aggravated assaults occur when the assault takes place against a member in a protected class, such as a fire fighter, police officer, paramedic, social services worker or an elderly person.
A skilled lawyer who has experience in aggravated assault cases may be able to craft several possible defenses in this type of case.
Self defense is the most common of these. You can claim self defense if you can show that you reasonably believed that you or someone else was in immediate danger and feared suffering death or a serious injury. You must also be able to show that the use of force was necessary and that you only used as much force as was necessary to repel the immediate danger.
Another defense is that you did not willfully commit an aggravated assault. In other words, you may have been coerced by someone else to commit the act, perhaps because you or a loved one was threatened if you did not act the way that you did.
In addition, innocent people are accused of crimes they did not commit all the time. A witness may make a mistake under the pressure and in the heat of the moment of a crime being committed. Being falsely accused may also stem from the fact that someone is angry at you and they are seeking a form of revenge. This can happen when an angry ex-spouse or lover is involved, or may involve custody battle or disputes between business partners.
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