Article provided by: Kohn & Yager, LLC
Aggravated assault is a serious crime in Georgia with potentially significant ramifications. Under Georgia assault and battery laws, a person can be charged with aggravated assault when he or she assaults:
- With intent to murder, to rape, or to rob;
- With a deadly weapon or with any object, device, or instrument which, when used offensively against a person, is likely to or actually does result in serious bodily injury;
- With any object, device, or instrument which, when used offensively against a person, is likely to or actually does result in strangulation; or
- A person or persons without legal justification by discharging a firearm from within a motor vehicle toward a person or persons.
What is the punishment for aggravated assault?
OCGA aggravated assault is tried as a felony. If the offender is found guilty, the minimum sentence is a one-year jail term, and the maximum penalty is twenty years in prison. Just like other battery crimes, the punishment for aggravated assault becomes more severe if the victim belongs to any of the following categories:
- Family members, including past spouses
- Officer of the court
- Teachers or students in a school safety zone
- Occupants of public facilities or transit vehicles
- Under 14 years (if the aggravated assault is with the intent to rape)
The punishment for aggravated assault with an attempt to rape a person under 14 years is a minimum jail term of 25 years and a maximum sentence of 50 years.
Does aggravated assault always involve touching the victim?
No. aggravated assault does not always involve touching the victim or injuring them. A threat or an attempt of violence is enough to get you arrested for aggravated assault, as long as you have the capacity to carry out the threat. For example, if you point a gun at someone, you are threatening to shoot them and putting them in fear of an injury. Even if you do not shoot them, the attempt is enough to get you arrested and charged for OCGA aggravated assault.
Who carries the burden of proof in an aggravated assault trial?
Like all other criminal cases, the burden of proof lies on the prosecution. They must show a demonstration of violence by the offender alongside an imminent ability to inflict the violence. The prosecution must also prove that the victim was in fear of the offender’s threats or acts. They cannot build a strong case if they are unable to prove these beyond a reasonable doubt.
What are some common defenses against aggravated assault charges?
If you’re facing an OCGA aggravated assault charge, you should immediately call our experienced and competent assault and battery lawyers. They will carefully examine your case and tell you how to achieve the best possible outcome. Below are some common defenses for aggravated assault charges:
- Innocence or denial of the act
- Lack of intent
- Self-defense or defense of others
- Defense of property
- The object involved should not arouse reasonable fear on the victim
- Consent of the victim
Have you or anyone you know been charged for assault or battery crimes? It would be best if you called experienced criminal defense lawyers immediately. Call Kohn and Yager for a free consultation on any of the following numbers: Sandy Springs Office/404) 567-5515, Downtown Atlanta/(404) 567-5515, Marietta Office/(770) 629-8620, Alpharetta Office/770) 629-9614.