Tempe Assault on an Officer Lawyer

While all assault charges can severely impact your life, cases involving attacks on a police officer are even higher stakes. In addition to a mandatory jail sentence, you could face the stigma of a conviction. A permanent criminal record can hurt you socially and professionally.

Work with a knowledgeable attorney with experience handling cases involving assaults on public officials. A Tempe assault on an officer lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group could meet with you to review the charges and determine an effective strategy moving forward.

What Constitutes an Assault on an Officer?

Arizona state law defines an assault as intentionally causing someone to experience physical harm, touching another person intending to harm them, or knowingly touching someone intending to harm, provoke, or insult them. According to Arizona Revised Statute Section 13-1204A(8), the offense can change from a simple assault to an aggravated assault if the alleged victim belongs to a particular protected class of professionals.

A defendant could face aggravated assault charges if the defendant knew or should have known that the victim was one of the following:

  • A police or peace officer, even if the officer was off-duty or not acting in an official capacity
  • A prosecutor
  • A public defender
  • A firefighter
  • A prison guard
  • A teacher
  • A park ranger
  • A court officer
  • A judicial enforcement officer
  • A medical worker

Even if there were no physical injuries and the defendant used no dangerous weapon, the incident could be charged as aggravated assault solely because of the alleged victim’s identity. Our seasoned Tempe attorneys can review the facts of an alleged assault on an officer and explain the specific charges.

Penalties for Assaulting a Police Officer

Arizona courts treat all assaults on police officers as felony crimes. However, the circumstances of the crime and the defendant’s criminal history can significantly impact the potential sentence. For instance, a court will likely treat the assault as a Class 5 non-dangerous felony if the officer experiences no physical injuries. A first-time conviction for a Class 5 non-dangerous felony comes with a presumptive sentence of 1.5 years. The prison sentence could range from 6 months with mitigating circumstances to 2.5 years with aggravating factors.

If the defendant had a history of prior convictions, the sentencing ranges for the same Class 5 felony can increase significantly, up to 7.5 years with aggravating circumstances. If the officer experienced a serious physical injury or the defendant used a dangerous weapon, the charges increase to a Class 2 dangerous felony. A first-time conviction comes with a presumptive term of 10.5 years but could lead to up to 21 years with aggravating circumstances. A repeat offender could face up to 35 years in prison.

When the stakes are this high, those accused of assaulting an officer need relentless representation from a skilled Tempe lawyer.

Contact a Tempe Assault on an Officer Attorney

Arizona courts treat crimes against police officers and other officials harshly. Even if an alleged incident does not result in injuries, you can still face a lengthy prison sentence upon conviction. When you are accused of assaulting a police officer, you must act promptly and secure experienced legal counsel.

Contact a Tempe assault on an officer lawyer to begin developing your defense. The former prosecutors at Grand Canyon Law Group are now dedicated defense lawyers who know how to fight for your rights. Call us today.

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