PHOENIX, AZ AGGRAVATED ASSAULT DEFENSE LAWYER

If you or somebody close to you has been charged with aggravated assault in Arizona, it is critical to hire an experienced attorney that will fight for you. Here at the Dwane Cates Law Group, we have years of experience defending aggravated assault cases across the State of Arizona. Also, Dwane Cates is certified by the State Bar of Arizona as a Specialist in Criminal Law, and has over 20 years of experience in handling aggravated assault cases. In addition, all of the lawyers at the Dwane Cates Law Group have handled numerous aggravated assault cases in many different counties across the state. We are aggressive at mounting defenses and strategies to help you fight aggravated assault allegations. For a free, 30-minute initial consultation, give us a call at (602) 296-3434.

AGGRAVATED ASSAULT STATUTE

In the State of Arizona, a person can be charged with an aggravated assault under A.R.S. § 13-1204 when they commit an assault as described in A.R.S. § 13-1203 AND do one of the following:

  • (1) A person causes serious physical injury to another person.
  • (2) A person uses a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument.
  • (3) A person commits an assault by force that causes temporary, bur substantial disfigurement, substantial loss or impairment of any body organ or part or a fracture of any body part.
  • (4) A person commits an assault while the victim is bound or otherwise physically restrained whole while the victim’s capacity to resist in substantially impaired.
  • (5) A person commits an assault after entering into the private home of another with intent to commit an assault.
  • (6) If the person is 18 years old, or older, and commits an assault on a person 15 years old, or younger.
  • (7) The person commits an assault and the person is in violation of an order of protection.
  • (8) Person commits an assault knowing that the victim is either a police officer, constable, firefighter, paramedic, teacher, prosecutor, public defender, park ranger or code enforcement officer.
  • (9) A person knowingly takes or attempts to take control over a peace officers firearm or any weapon that is being used by a peace officer
  • (10) If a person is imprisoned and the victim is acting in an official capacity, and the person knows the victim is acting within their official capacity as a detention officer. OR
  • (11) If a person uses a simulated deadly weapon.
  • (12) If the person commits a regular assault under § 13-1203 and both of the following occur:
    a. The person intentionally or knowingly impedes the normal breathing or circulation of blood by applying pressure to the throat or neck, or by obstructing the nose and mouth; AND
    b. Any of the circumstances set forth in Paragraphs 1-6 are present.

DIFFERENT CLASSES OF AGGRAVATED ASSAULT FELONIES

Class 2 Aggravated Assault (Non-Dangerous)
If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under § 13-1204(A), paragraph 1 or 2, and the alleged victim was under 15 years-old , than it will be charged as a class 2 felony and it could be punished as a Dangerous Crime Against Children under § 13-705. Also, if the victim was a peace officer or a prosecutor, and paragraph 1 or 2 applies, it will be charged as a class 2 felony and could trigger a special sentence (discussed below).

In Arizona, the punishment for a class 2 felony conviction with no prior felony convictions is a presumptive of 5 years in the Department of Corrections. This can be increased up to 12.5 years with significant aggravation and can be reduced to 3 years with significant mitigation. Probation would be available for a first conviction; however, the punishment can be severely increased if the state alleges prior felony convictions, or other sentencing enhancements.

Class 3 Aggravated Assault (Non-Dangerous)
If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under § 13-1204(A), paragraph 1, 2, 9(a) or 11, then you are looking at a class 3 non-dangerous felony if the offense was not charged as a dangerous felony. If the Aggravated Assault was charged under paragraph 3, and the victim was a peace officer or a prosecutor, it will be charged as a class 3 felony instead of a class 4.

In Arizona, the punishment for a Class 3 felony conviction with no prior felony convictions is a presumptive of 3.5 years in the Department of Corrections. This can be increased up to 8.75 years with significant aggravation and can be reduced to 2 years with significant mitigation. Probation would be available for a first conviction; however, the punishment can be severely increased if the state alleges prior felony convictions, or other sentencing enhancements.

Class 4 Aggravated Assault
If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under §13-1204(A), paragraph 3 or subsection B, then you are looking at a class 4 non-dangerous felony if the offense was not charged as a dangerous felony. If the Aggravated Assault was charged under paragraph 8(a), and the victim was a peace officer who suffered ANY physical injury, it will be charged as a class 4 felony instead of a class 5.

In Arizona, the punishment for a Class 4 felony conviction with no prior felony convictions is a presumptive of 2.5 years in the Department of Corrections. This can be increased up to 3.75 years with significant aggravation and can be reduced to 1 year with significant mitigation. Probation would be available for a first conviction; however, the punishment can be severely increased if the state alleges prior felony convictions, or other sentencing enhancements.

Class 5 Aggravated Assault
If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under §13-1204 (A), paragraph 9(b) or 10 then you are looking at a class 5 non-dangerous felony if the offense was not charged as a dangerous felony.
In Arizona, the punishment for a Class 5 felony conviction with no prior felony convictions is a presumptive of 1.5 years in the Department of Corrections. This can be increased up to 2.5 years with significant aggravation and can be reduced to 6 months with significant mitigation. Probation would be available for a first conviction; however, the punishment can be severely increased if the state alleges prior felony convictions, or other sentencing enhancements.

Class 6 Aggravated Assault
If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under §13-1204(A), paragraph 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9(c) , then you are looking at a class 5 non-dangerous felony if the offense was not charged as a dangerous felony.

In Arizona, the punishment for a Class 6 felony conviction with no prior felony convictions is a presumptive of 1 year in the Department of Corrections. This can be increased up to 2 years with significant aggravation and can be reduced to 4 months with significant mitigation. Probation would be available for a first conviction; however, the punishment can be severely increased if the state alleges prior felony convictions, or other sentencing enhancements.

SPECIAL SENTENCES FOR CERTAIN AGGRAVATED ASSAULTS

The Aggravated Assault statute has special punishments for crimes committed against certain people. The most common are Aggravated Assaults committed against peace officers or firefighters.

If you have been charged with Aggravated Assault under § 13-1204(A), paragraph 1 or 2, and the victim was a peace officer, you are looking at a class 2 felony. The same punishments apply as listed above with one major difference. A conviction under this section with a victim who is a peace officer will result in a mandatory term of incarceration in the Department of Corrections for no less than the presumptive (5 years). Also, the sentence that is imposed would be flat time, and the defendant would not be eligible for parole or early release. The would have to serve every day of the sentence in prison.

Another special sentence can be imposed if the victim of the Aggravated Assault is a child under 15 years-old at the time of the offense. If the Aggravated Assault is charged under paragraph 1 or 2, and the victim is under 15 years-old, it could be considered a Dangerous Crime Against Children, and would be subject to increased punishment under § 13-705. Under this sentencing guideline, the presumptive sentence would be 17 years in the Department of Corrections. It could be increased up to 24 calendar years with significant aggravation and could be decreased to 10 calendar years with significant mitigation.

AGGRAVATED ASSAULT AS DANGEROUS OFFENSES

Oftentimes there is confusion as to what a dangerous offense means. In Arizona, the term “dangerous” is simply a designation. It is not a separate offense. For example, if a person is charged with an Aggravated Assault against a police officer, but they did not have a dangerous instrument or a deadly weapon, and did not cause any serious physical harm, it would be charged as a non-dangerous class 2 felony. However, if that same event occurs, but the person had a gun in their possession, it would be charged as an Aggravated Assault as class 2, dangerous offense.

When an Aggravated Assault is charged as a dangerous offense, it changes the entire sentencing range for the different classes of felony charges. The punishments for dangerous Aggravated Assault are severely increased. Under Arizona law, a conviction for a dangerous offense means the person will not be eligible for probation, even if this is their first conviction. They will be required to serve time in the Department of Corrections.

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