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DAVID CLARK
Criminal Defense Attorney

Bucks County Aggravated Assault Lawyer

In Bucks County, aggravated assault is graded as a felony of the first and/or second-degree and is treated in a very serious fashion. The elements determining the specific degree are enumerated in Section 2702 of the Pennsylvania Crimes Code. Under this legislation, an individual can be charged with aggravated assault when committing an assault or assaultive behavior causing injuries to another, whether or not the individual has use of a deadly weapon.

These charges are taken very seriously by the local legislature. Therefore, should you find yourself facing aggravated assault charges in Bucks County, contact a local Bucks County aggravated assault lawyer as soon as possible in order to defend your rights and build a strong defense.

Aggravating Factors

In cases where more severe injuries exist, a felony in the first degree is often charged. This charge requires serious bodily injury of the kind that can affect a person’s well-being and threaten their life or a vital organ. The prosecutor must prove those elements beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction.

Additionally, someone may face a felony of the second degree if one of two things has occurred. First, bodily injury caused by the use of a deadly weapon, used upon an alleged victim by the alleged perpetrator. Or second, when the plaintiff filing the claim is a member of a protected class.

The only distinction between aggravated assault felony in the first degree and aggravated assault felony in the second degree, as a Bucks County aggravated assault lawyer can explain, is that the extent of injury must be serious bodily injury for a felony in the first degree, and only bodily injury or the threat of bodily injury with a deadly weapon is required for a felony in the second degree.

Protected Class

A protected class refers to those who serve as civil servants. As defined by Pennsylvania statute, protected classes include:

  • Police officers
  • Prosecutors
  • Judges
  • Firemen
  • Medical Personnel

In other words, if any civil servant, such as a public defender, is injured and any sort of bodily injury is caused to them, the resulting charges rise to the level of a second-degree felony offense.

If, on the other hand, the event in question occurred to a non-protected class, it would be graded as a misdemeanor of the second degree.

Penalties

Aggravated assault in Bucks County can carry penalties that are set out in maximums by the Pennsylvania sentencing guidelines. For a felony of the first degree, a person can face as much as 20 years in jail and a $2,500.00 fine. For felonies of the second degree, a person could face up to 10 years in jail and a $10,000.00 fine.

Additionally, in cases where other crimes, such as a robbery, are also included in the charges alongside an aggravated assault, the potential consequences stemming from the event will rise proportionally. The sentencing guidelines and maximum sentence will be higher because the court will take the other charges into account as well.

Alternatively, a person could possibly face a consecutive charge–that is, a sentence that runs in addition to the maximum sentence for aggravated assault, making it imperative that a Bucks County aggravated assault attorney is contacted.

Long Term Consequences

A felony conviction can affect a person’s future, employment, voting rights and many other aspects of their life. In addition, having an assault as a felony often carries even greater difficulties in society in general.

An individual with such a conviction should be aware that their opportunities for employment in the future will be severely limited. Something else to consider is that their ability to obtain credit and even loans may be hindered as a result of such a conviction. Being a convicted felon also prevents an individual from legally owning a firearm or participating in certain areas of government in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Assault with a Deadly Weapon

According to the laws governed by Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a person charged with an assaultive behavior with a deadly weapon would be charged with aggravated assault graded as a felony of the second degree.

It is very common for otherwise or little-known items to be weapons in cases involving aggravated assault graded as a felony in the second degree. Anything that can be used or is being used to cause such bodily injury to another can be determined to be such a weapon. Items could include firearms, baseball bats, a knife, wooden items, any sort of club, metal items, and even very common household items if they are used to inflict serious bodily injury or bodily injury upon another.

When a deadly weapon is used and results in serious bodily injuries, the person could be charged with aggravated assault felony of the first degree, and as such, could face as long as 20 years in jail and a $2,500 fine. To avoid such penalties, it is imperative that an individual consult with an aggravated assualt lawyer in Bucks County as soon as possible.

Contacting An Assault Lawyer

The charges, penalties, and long-term repercussions of an aggravated assault charge can be intimidating and often overwhelming. That is why it is important to have your case handled by an experienced Bucks County criminal defense attorney. Having a Bucks County aggravated assault attorney by your side can help increase the chances of negotiating a sentence which not only avoids long periods of incarceration, but also limits the fines, costs and other penalties associated with aggravated assault convictions.