Grand Canyon Law GroupN/a
Being in a vehicle accident that causes injuries to others is a traumatic experience. It is even scarier if you face a criminal charge like vehicular aggravated assault after the incident.
Prosecutors tend to pursue these cases aggressively, so working with an experienced attorney is essential. Contact a New River vehicular aggravated assault lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group to get started on an airtight defense against the charges.
The Arizona penal code outlines harsh penalties for crimes classified as dangerous felonies. An assault that causes serious physical harm could be aggravated assault, which falls under this category. The definition of aggravated assault in Arizona Revised Statute §13-1204 requires the prosecutor to prove the accused acted intentionally or recklessly to cause serious physical harm to another person.
Someone who causes injuries in a car accident could face aggravated vehicular assault charges if their conduct was intentional or reckless. Intentionality does not mean the accused intended to harm someone but that they intentionally behaved in a way that could harm someone. The charge often follows crashes resulting from drunk driving, racing, excessive speed, and similar conduct.
Prosecutors often overcharge this crime and lack strong evidence to support it. Depending on the circumstances, a knowledgeable New River attorney at our firm can often convince a prosecutor to reduce a vehicular aggravated assault charge to a misdemeanor offense or non-criminal infraction.
A prosecutor could charge vehicular aggravated assault as a Class 3 or Class 2 dangerous felony. The severity of the charge and penalties depends on the injured person’s identity. The state’s sentencing scheme is complex, so it is crucial to discuss the potential penalties in a vehicular aggravated assault case with a seasoned lawyer at our firm.
When someone over 18 recklessly or intentionally causes harm to someone under 15, the vehicular aggravated assault charge is a Class 2 dangerous felony. The charge also applies if the injured person is a peace officer. If convicted, the presumptive sentence for a first offender is ten years and six months in prison. Someone with a prior felony conviction could face 14 to 28 years.
In most cases, vehicular aggravated assault is a Class 3 dangerous felony. A first offender faces a presumptive sentence of seven years and six months, but the sentence could be as short as five years and as long as 15 years. A prior felony conviction lengthens the presumptive sentence to 11 years and three months, but the judge has the discretion to impose a sentence ranging from ten to 20 years.
Our skilled New River attorneys could offer multiple defenses to defeat a vehicular aggravated assault charge. The prosecutor must prove every element of aggravated assault, and a legal professional could focus on weakness in the prosecutor’s evidence.
For example, the charge requires that someone suffer a serious injury. According to Arizona Revised Statute §13-105(39), a “serious” injury causes:
One defense to an aggravated vehicular assault charge is that the alleged victim’s injuries were not serious, as defined under the statute. Disputing the prosecutor’s evidence that the driver’s conduct was reckless or intentional could be another viable defense strategy. Alleging police misconduct or failure to respect the accused’s rights could also lead to a dismissal of charges in some cases.
A conviction on a dangerous felony charge will limit your future opportunities and deprive you of certain civil rights. It could also affect your immigration status and impact child custody proceedings.
When the stakes are this high, you need an aggressive defense attorney fighting for you. A New River vehicular aggravated assault lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group is ready to represent you and your best interests. Call us as soon as you are arrested for legal counsel.