AGGRAVATED ASSAULT

In Florida, per Florida Statute 784.021. an aggravated assault is an:

“assault (FS 784.011) with a deadly weapon without intent to kill; or with intent to commit a felony.”

Essentially, an aggravated assault adds the factor of a weapon or the intent to commit a felony to the simple assault definition.

A “deadly weapon” is a weapon that is used or threatened to be used in a way that is likely to produce death or great bodily harm.

Note: the definition of a “deadly weapon” is very broad and consist of something as simple as a beer bottle.

PENALTIES

Aggravated Assault is a third-degree felony and even first time offenders can face prison time. 3rd degree felonies are punishable by:

  • Up to 5 years in prison; or

  • Up to 5 years on probation; and

  • $5000.00 fine

Note: if the victim is an officer or if a firearm was used and discharged, the punishment can include minimum mandatory prison time.

DEFENSES

Different defenses are available depending on the facts of the case, however, not every case will have a defense. The defenses can be legal or factual in nature such as:

  • Self-defense;

  • Defense of others;

  • Defense of property;

  • Stand your ground;

  • “Deadly weapon” not used;

  • Lack of intent;

  • Threat not imminent;

  • Factual disputes.

Given the severe penalties and potential minimum mandatory prison time, aggravated assault is not a charge to take lightly. Prosecutors take these types of cases very serious and victims often want to see harsh penalties imposed.

 

Charged with Aggravated Assault? Contact us today.

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