Arizona law identifies many criminal offenses involving motor vehicles defined under Arizona law. Among the most serious are those that allege the use of a vehicle as a weapon during an assault. Vehicular aggravated assault is a felony charge that carries a mandatory jail sentence upon conviction.
A Scottsdale vehicular aggravated assault lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group is prepared to help you avoid this outcome. Our dedicated attorneys can explain the state’s assault laws concerning the use of a vehicle. We are also prepared to build a defense tailored to the situation and fight to protect your way of life.
Under Arizona Revised Statutes § 13-1203, a person commits assault by knowingly or recklessly causing physical injury to someone else. Causing another person to reasonably fear bodily injury can also lead to assault charges. In most situations, an assault is a misdemeanor, where a conviction is unlikely to result in jail time.
However, using a vehicle as a weapon makes the allegations much more serious. Under Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-1204, committing an assault while using a deadly weapon is considered aggravated assault, a felony charge. A motor vehicle of any kind is considered a deadly weapon, so injuring someone with a car can be considered aggravated assault.
Vehicular aggravated assault charges are usually Class 3 felonies. This means a conviction, even with mitigating circumstances, must bring a prison sentence of at least two years. A conviction with aggravating circumstances can lengthen a sentence to more than 8 years. If the offense is charged as “dangerous,” then the sentence may be much higher. These guidelines apply to first-time offenders, and those with prior offenses face even harsher sentencing. A knowledgeable Scottsdale attorney can provide further information about the potential penalties that a person faces for vehicular aggravated assault charges.
A core concept in any assault case is the notion of intent. Prosecutors must prove a defendant intended to cause harm to another through their actions. This is a more complex concept than it may appear.
A person who strikes another with a vehicle does not necessarily intend to cause them harm. Every day, thousands of traffic accidents occur around the country. Prosecutors must prove a collision resulted from a driver’s aggressive intentions toward the injured party. They may attempt to prove this through collision reconstruction reports or evidence of a previous relationship between the people involved.
Our local vehicular aggravated assault lawyers can fight these allegations. One potential defense is to argue the collision was merely an accident. Our skilled attorneys could also contest other critical points of the prosecution’s case, such as the identity of a supposed assailant or whether a defendant acted in self-defense.
Aggravated vehicular assault charges are felony cases where any conviction comes with a mandatory jail sentence. In extreme situations, a conviction can lead to multiple years in prison. It is crucial that you pursue a positive outcome with help from a seasoned attorney.
A Scottsdale vehicular aggravated assault lawyer can help determine an effective defense strategy for your circumstances. The legal team at Grand Canyon Law Group works to evaluate the facts of your case, explain the relevant laws, and identify realistic goals in your situation. Call us today to learn how we can put our experience to work for you.