Baton Rouge Aggravated Assault Lawyer
More than 380,000 Americans were arrested for aggravated assault crimes in 2020. Types of assault charges and penalties vary by state, but in Louisiana, you could be facing thousands of dollars in fines and years behind bars. Not only that, you could receive an assault and battery charge on your criminal record for years to come. That’s why you need the strongest legal defense on your side. Criminal defense lawyers at the Law Offices of Ossie Brown have been defending Louisianans for decades. We have what it takes to give you the best case outcome possible. Call a Baton Rouge aggravated assault lawyer at 225-343-1111 to schedule a free consultation.
What is Aggravated Assault?
Aggravated assault is a type of physical violence that occurs with or without a deadly weapon with the intention of causing serious bodily harm. In Louisiana, you may receive aggravated assault charges when you attempt to cause serious bodily injury or when you intentionally cause serious bodily injury.
Additionally, threatening to physically injure someone could result in an assault charge, even if the offender didn’t actually follow through with the threat. If someone has the ability to follow through with a physical attack and their threats cause the victim to fear for their safety, then the offender could be charged with aggravated assault in Louisiana.
Examples of Aggravated Assault
Listed below are common examples of aggravated assault.
- Threatening to hit someone or hitting someone with a weapon such as a knife, a bar, a bat, etc.
- Pointing a gun at someone and threatening to shoot them or actually shooting someone.
- Assaulting or attempting to assault someone with the intent to commit another violent crime, such as rape, murder, robbery, etc.
- Throwing sharp or glass objects at someone and causing a serious injury such as eye damage, major skin lacerations, partial or complete finger amputations, etc.
- Violently shoving someone down the stairs and causing them to suffer one or more broken bones.
- Concealing your identity while threatening serious bodily harm upon a person.
What is Aggravated Battery?
Many people confuse aggravated assault and aggravated battery, because many states end up lumping the two terms into one charge: assault and battery.
Aggravated battery occurs when someone causes great bodily harm with a dangerous weapon. Dangerous and deadly weapons can include things like guns, knives, brass knuckles, swords, etc. But a deadly weapon could also be an ordinary object used specifically to hurt someone, like a rock, a pipe, a vase, a cord, a rope, etc.
Examples of Aggravated Battery
Listed below are common examples of aggravated battery.
- Intentional use of a deadly weapon or a dangerous object in order to hit someone.
- Shooting someone with a gun.
- Hurting someone to the point where they suffer permanent or temporary disfigurement from bruising, scarring, lacerations, etc.
Aggravated Assault vs. Simple Assault
Simple assault is the act of intentionally causing another person to be in fear of incoming physical harm. Physically injuring the person is not required; instead, the individual only needs to be reasonably afraid of imminent physical harm. Often, simple assault tends to be a misdemeanor charge. In Louisiana, simple assault is described as “an assault committed without a dangerous weapon,” for which the convicted “shall be fined not more than two hundred dollars, or imprisoned for not more than ninety days, or both.”
On the other hand, aggravated assault is considered a much more serious offense. In the instance of an aggravated assault, an attempt is made to cause physical injury to another person without regard for human life. Typically, an aggravated assault is a felony that carries harsher sentencing and liability than simple assault. The aggravating factor can include the use of a weapon or attacking a victim whose status is legally protected, such as an on-duty police officer.
In addition, the degree of bodily injury sustained by a victim can elevate the charge from simple assault to aggravated. If the assault led to permanent injury or disfigurement, it can be considered aggravated. The same can be true for an assault that led to a life-threatening injury. There are several scenarios that can lead to an aggravated assault charge. But the main thing to remember is that these charges are serious, and you need a Baton Rouge aggravated assault lawyer on your side.
Who are Protected Victims in Louisiana?
Aggravated assault involving a member of a protected class could result in harsher penalties in Louisiana. A protected victim is considered a:
- Physically or mentally disabled person
- Medical professional
- Elderly person
- Police officer or EMT
- Social services worker
How to Prove Aggravated Assault and Battery
In order to prove that an assault committed, attempted, or threatened is aggravated assault, prosecutors must prove all of the elements of this serious crime. Prosecutors must gather sufficient evidence to show that the:
- Offender intended to use physical force on the alleged victim,
- Offender used a deadly weapon during the attack,
- Physical attack caused permanent or temporary disfigurement or another serious injury.
Prosecutors may prove the elements of this crime through pictures of the victim’s injuries, testimony from the victim’s doctor about their injuries and treatment, pictures of the attack scene, pictures of the assault weapon, and witness statements.
Louisiana Aggravated Assault Penalties
Aggravated assault charges in Louisiana often depend on the circumstances surrounding the violent crime, such as the type of harm threatened, the type of weapon used, whether or not the victim was of a protected class, whether or not the offender already has assault and battery on their criminal record, etc.
Listed below are the criminal charges and penalties for aggravated assault and battery according to Louisiana law.
- Simple Assault is a misdemeanor offense punishable by a $200 fine and/or 90 days in jail. (RS § 14:38)
- Aggravated Assault is a misdemeanor offense punishable by a $1,000 fine and/or 6 months in jail. (RS § 14:37)
- Aggravated Assault With a Gun is a felony offense punishable by a $10,000 fine and/or 10 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:37.4)
- Aggravated Assault Onto a Police Officer is a felony offense punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or 1-10 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:37.2)
- Aggravated Assault With a Motor Vehicle Upon Police Officers is a felony offense punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or 1-10 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:37.6)
- Aggravated Assault Committed Onto a Romantic Partner is punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or 1 to 5 years in jail at hard labor. (RS § 14:34.9.1)
- Aggravated Battery is a felony offense punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or 10 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:34)
- Aggravated Second Degree Battery is a felony offense punishable by a $10,000 fine and/or 15 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:34.7)
- Battery of a Police Officer is a felony offense punishable by a $500 fine and/or up to 6 months in jail. A second offense is punishable by a $1,000 fine and/or 1-3 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:34.2)
- Battery or a School Teacher is punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or 30 days to 1 year in jail if the offender was a student. If the crime was committed by someone who wasn’t a student, they will have to pay a $5,000 fine and/or spend 1-5 years in jail with or without hard labor. Finally, if the school teacher suffered severe injuries that required medical attention, the offender must pay a $5,000 fine and/or spend 1-5 years in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:34.3)
- Battery of a Romantic Partner is punishable by a $300 to $1,000 fine and/or 30 days to 6 months in jail for a first conviction. A second conviction is punishable by a $750 to $1,000 fine and/or 60 days to 1 year in jail with or without hard labor. (RS § 14:34.9)
Possible Defenses for Aggravated Assault
When you seek legal help from a Baton Rouge criminal defense attorney at the Law Offices of Ossie Brown, we will carefully analyze the facts of your case and create a strong defense. There are many types of defenses we could use in your favor depending on the circumstances surrounding the crime and whether or not it was a threatened, attempted, or intentional act.
Some assault and battery incidents truly occur due to defense of self, others, or property. If that is the case, a Baton Rouge aggravated assault lawyer will gather evidence to suggest that the other party was the first to attack or threaten an attack, and you were merely protecting yourself, others, or your property from imminent harm. Additionally, an attorney will need evidence that there was no other way out of the situation other than to inflict harm on the person. Lastly, the level of force used in the incident must be reasonable when compared to the victim’s threat.
For example, maybe a person threatens to punch you in the face, and you respond by non-fatally shooting them. In many cases, a judge and jury won’t think of this as a reasonable response to the victim’s threat. Additionally, if a person threatens to punch you in the face and you could have escaped through a window or door, and instead you choose to non-fatally shoot them, you may not have a strong self-defense case.
Sometimes, criminal defendants are identified through inaccurate witness statements or low quality pictures and video. If you truly didn’t commit the crime, a Baton Rouge aggravated assault lawyer will build the strongest case possible in order to prove that.
Maybe the assault committed was truly an accident and neither party involved in the incident had criminal intent. For example, maybe two people were out deer hunting and one of them had a gun malfunction or just shot the wrong target. A Baton Rouge aggravated assault lawyer at the Law Offices of Ossie Brown could possibly use this defense in your favor if the facts of your case support it.
Lastly, our Baton Rouge legal team could claim that an offender is clinically insane and therefore did not act knowingly, intentionally, or recklessly when they committed bodily harm on the victim. Of course, in order for this defense to work, the offender must have medical evidence of a mental disability or prove insanity through the M'Naghten test.
This test will basically determine if an offender could recognize right from wrong at the time of the aggravated assault. If the test reveals that the offender truly didn’t know right from wrong during the violent incident, then their charges will be lowered or dropped altogether.
Call a Baton Rouge Aggravated Assault Lawyer at the Law Offices of Ossie Brown TodayIf you were convicted of a violent crime such as aggravated assault, you need strong legal representation on your side. Our Baton Rouge law firm has decades of combined experience in litigating all sorts of criminal defense cases. A Baton Rouge assault and battery attorney will listen to your story, investigate your claim, and build a strong defense all while protecting your sensitive or confidential information. We are ready to begin an attorney client relationship with you today. Call the Law Offices of Ossie Brown at 225-343-1111 to schedule a free consultation.
Let us review your case at no cost to you. We want to take the time to get to know you and understand your legal goals and objectives.
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