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What separates assault from aggravated assault?

On Behalf of | Jun 6, 2022 | Blog, Violent Crimes |

Misdemeanor assault offenses generally require an individual to have felt threatened by someone’s words or actions. Under Title 5 of the Arkansas Code, assault in the third degree alleges that a defendant intended and caused another person to feel physical danger could occur.

When facing allegations of aggravated assault, however, a defendant may have acted in a way that shows disregard for human life. If law enforcement filed aggravated assault charges against you or a loved one, a prosecutor may claim that the act created an immediate threat of physical injury or death.

How may a weapon affect an aggravated assault charge?

By displaying a deadly weapon, an individual risks causing others to feel a sense of imminent danger even without the intent of using it. The Arkansas code, however, allows officials to file aggravated assault charges against individuals who display weapons in a manner causing others to feel a threat of physical injury or death.

Weapons, however, may not matter when individuals cause first responders to feel threatened. Under Arkansas Code Title 5, spitting or transferring human waste, pathogens or bodily fluids may result in an aggravated assault charge. If, for example, first responders acting on duty claim that you spit blood on them, prosecutors may file aggravated assault charges.

How may an assault charge result in a conviction?

Felony assault requires showing that a defendant had the capability of inflicting harm, as noted by the U.S. Department of Justice. Individuals who threaten someone but do not cause physical injury, for example, may not face severe penalties. If charged with an alleged aggravated assault, a conviction may require prosecutors to prove that the defendant had an intent to cause physical injury or death.