When Does Assault Rise to the Level of Aggravated Assault?


Tex. Pen. Code § 22.02 establishes the crime of aggravated assault, which is an enhanced version of assault that carries the potential for more significant penalties than for a simple assault conviction. Assault occurs under § 22.01 when individuals:

  • Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes bodily injury to others
  • Intentionally or knowingly threatens others with bodily injury, or
  • Intentionally or knowingly causes physical contact with others when the person knows or reasonably should believe that others will consider the contact to be offensive or provocative

When individuals commit assault, and other aggravating factors are present, they may face aggravated assault charges. Individuals who cause serious bodily injury to others during an assault commit aggravated assault. The other situation that constitutes aggravated assault occurs when individuals use or exhibit a deadly weapon in the commission of the assault.

When Does Assault Rise to the Level of Aggravated Assault?

Aggravated assault generally is a second-degree felony offense, except that it becomes a first-degree felony offense in the following situations:

  • The accused persons use a deadly weapon during the assault and cause serious bodily injury to a specific family or household members
  • Public servants commit the offense within the scope of their employment or duties
  • Individuals commit the crime against others whom they know are public servants or security officers in the discharge of their official duties, or in retaliation for performing their official duties
  • Individuals commit the offense in retaliation against or on account of the service as a witness, informant, or a reporter of a crime

Furthermore, aggravated assault may be a first-degree felony if:

  • The accused persons are in a motor vehicle
  • They knowingly fire a gun in the direction of a home, building, or vehicle, with recklessness as to whether it is occupied, and
  • Someone suffers serious bodily injury as a result

Peek Law Group dedicates a large part of its practice to assisting individuals in resolving their criminal charges. We know that criminal proceedings can be intimidating and overwhelming for those who are facing potential penalties for criminal charges. We will work with you to achieve the most favorable outcome possible in your situation. Call our office today and set up a consultation with our skilled criminal defense attorneys today.

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