It might surprise you that aggravated assault charges can stem from a simple fight that turns physical. While fighting might seem harmless at first, emotions can take over and lead to property damage or injury. Alcohol and drugs are often involved when it comes to altercations, but neither put you above the law. Afraid of what you can lose if you get into a public fight? Read on to find out more.
Aggravated Assault and Fighting
Law enforcement will charge someone with aggravated assault if they cause serious physical injury or use a deadly weapon. Deadly weapons such as guns or knives can permanently injure or disfigure someone. Often, fights between two people or groups start physically but then can escalate to using weapons. If you use a piece of property with the intent to seriously injure, such as a piece of broken glass, this also qualifies. Aggravated assault can also exist for smaller issues against public servants, such as police officers. Consequences are nothing to mess around with. The average prison time for aggravated assault can range from 6 months to multiple years.
Disturbing the Peace
Whether you instigate or retaliate in a fight, you could be charged with disturbing the peace. Even though disturbing the peace is a misdemeanor charge, the fine is typically hundreds of dollars. If you have a criminal record or repeated charges, you may have to serve weeks or months in jail. An example would be if you repeatedly yelled derogatory terms at someone across a bar, disrupting the environment and instigating that person’s emotions.
Battery and Aggravated Assault
Assault charges can also include an additional charge of battery. Battery charges happen any time there is a criminal action involving the use of force. The force could be applied to property or another human being. If you get into a fight and use force of any kind but do not cause physical harm, then this charge can be limited to a misdemeanor. However, if any physical injury results from the altercation (to you or another party), then the charge will be more severe than just a misdemeanor.
At Stephen Bowling and Associates, we understand altercations occur and law enforcement can get involved. No one wants their criminal record marred by aggravated assault charges. Having assault charges on your record can cost you your career and even lead to debt. If you need advice or help dealing with assault charges big or small, our team is here to help. Visit our website to set up an appointment or give us a call today at 512-599-9000.