Does Assault Involve Physical Harm?

When facing allegations of assault, experienced Tucson lawyers understand the nuances of various assault charges and can build a formidable defense based on how you are being charged.

Assault charges do not always involve physical injury based on the definition of the assault given in the Arizona Revised Code. The statute says a person commits assault by:

  • Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing any physical injury to another person
  • Intentionally placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent physical injury
  • Knowingly touching another person with the intent to injure, insult or provoke that person

Under these defining attributes of assault, a person is subject to misdemeanor charges — and while a victim may have experienced physical harm, assault may include the mere threat of harm or touching that occurred with the intent to injure without the occurrence of any actual harm. By comparison, aggravated assault charges involve more serious factors, including causing serious physical injury to another, using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, causing temporary but substantial disfigurement or loss or impairment of any body organ or a fracture, or using physical restraints that substantially lessen the person's ability to resist. Other forms of aggravated assault occur when someone over the age of 18 assaults a minor or assaults someone in a private home after entering with the intention to commit assault. Whenever assault victims are public officials, such as police, firefighters, teachers, healthcare practitioners, prosecutors or public defenders, the charges also rise to the level of aggravated assault — which is subject to felony charges.

Whenever possible, a proficient Tucson assault defense attorney can reduce serious assault charges or even get the charges dropped altogether. Nesci & St. Louis, PLLC is committed to providing our clients with the best criminal defense available.


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