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How Aggravated Assault Can Affect Your Criminal Record

Posted on July 3, 2023 in assault & violent crimes

Aggravated assault is a very serious charge that can have devastating consequences for the rest of your life. This is a felony charge in Arizona that can remain on your criminal record forever. A felony conviction can make it more difficult to find a job and/or housing, as well as take away your right to join the Armed Forces or own a firearm. Having this offense on your criminal record can also influence future cases against you. It is critical to contact a Phoenix assault defense lawyer right away if you are facing an aggravated assault charge.

What Is the Definition of Aggravated Assault?

According to Arizona Revised Statutes, Section 13-1204, aggravated assault is an assault that causes serious physical injury, involves the use of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, is done by means of force that cause temporary but substantial disfigurement or disability, violates a protection order, involves trespassing to commit assault, or occurs while the victim is bound or physically restrained. If the assailant is over the age of 18 and the victim is 14 or younger, it is also considered aggravated assault. Finally, assaulting a peace officer or another protected person is aggravated assault.

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Aggravated Assault Is a Felony in Arizona

Aggravated assault is charged as a felony crime under Arizona law. It is a class 3 felony when it causes serious physical injury to another person, involves the use of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument (or a simulated deadly weapon), or if the individual knowingly takes or attempts to take control over a peace officer’s firearm. It is a class 2 felony if these acts are committed against a peace officer or prosecutor. Other types of aggravated assault can be charged as class 4, 5 or 6 felonies.

Consequences of a Felony on Your Criminal Record

If you are convicted of a felony in Arizona, it will stay on your permanent criminal record. You may not qualify for expungement in the future, either, if the crime involved a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, caused serious bodily injuries to another, or involved a victim under the age of 15. You will have to deal with many effects of a felony, including:

  • Employment and housing issues: you may be limited in your job and housing choices, as employers and landlords will be able to see an aggravated assault conviction on your record. You will be barred from obtaining a commercial driver’s license, as well.
  • The loss of constitutional rights: individuals with felony convictions give up certain rights, including the right to vote in elections and bear arms. If you are found in violation of these restrictions at any time, you can face additional criminal consequences.
  • Effects on child custody: a family law judge may decide to take away or limit your custodial rights as a parent based on an aggravated assault conviction on your record.
  • Ramifications on future cases: a felony conviction or history of violent crime on your record can negatively impact any new charges you might face in the future. It could lead to increased punishments based on your criminal record or be brought up before a jury to try to demonstrate a history of violence or crime.

 You may also lose your eligibility for government aid, such as food stamps, Social Security benefits and educational assistance. In addition, you will be disqualified from ever joining the military. Finally, a violent crime such as aggravated assault on your record may stop you from being able to enter certain countries. An attorney from AZ Defenders can do everything possible to prevent an aggravated assault conviction on your behalf.