Simple assault is the attempt to physically harm a victim, including the act of putting the victim in apprehension of imminent battery. In most jurisdictions, felony assault is more serious because it’s a typically charged for attempts to:
- Engage in sexual activity with a minor under the age of 14 years old
- Use a deadly weapon to threaten the victim
- Cause the victim serious bodily injury
In Texas, felony assault is charged as a third degree felony. A person can be charged with third degree felony assault when:
- The defendant knew the victim is a public servant acting in their official capacity, or tried to retaliate because of the person’s status as a public servant;
- The victim is a family member, a current/former romantic partner, and/or a person that lives in the same dwelling as the defendant;
- The victim is a family member and the defendant impeded their breathing by choking or suffocating the victim.
- The victim is an emergency services personnel, police officer, or security officer and was working in their official capacity at the time.
But unlike other states, Texas felony assault does not include attempting to have sex with a minor, or using a deadly weapon.
Aggravated assault when the defendant seriously injured the victim, or used a weapon during the assault. Aggravated assault is a more serious charge than felony assault. A conviction for aggravated assault is punishable by 2 to 20 years in prison, and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
A conviction of third degree felony assault is punishable by 2 to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
Yes. Assault charges are quite complex because of the levels of assault. Contact a Texas criminal lawyer and they will provide you with legal advice and guidance when it comes to getting charges reduced, dismissed, or going to trial.