Have you been slammed with misdemeanor assault charges? You may be frightened of the repercussions and worried about how this will affect your criminal record. If you are convicted, you will have a legal history of violence, and therefore can be easily turned away from new work opportunities. This stain on your record can be a huge inconvenience for the rest of your life.
Let’s observe Texas law in relation to class C misdemeanor assault charges and what you should be prepared for. In the end, we will explain how Monks Law Firm can help you escape the worst repercussions.
Texas Law and Misdemeanor Assault
Many states treat assault and battery differently. The distinction is that assault usually refers to the threat of violence, while battery refers to bodily contact and injury. In Texas, this distinction is less obvious. The elements for a case against a defendant for assault and battery are the same, but there are different degrees to the offense. Threatening someone with bodily harm may just result in a fine, but hurting someone can place you in jail for over a year.
The Statutory Definition of assault is:
- Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing bodily harm to another, including the person’s spouse;
- Intentionally or knowingly threatening another person with imminent bodily injury, including the person’s spouse; or
- Intentionally or knowingly causing physical contact with another when the person knows or should reasonably believe that the other will regard the contact as offensive or provocative.
There are, however, different classifications of assault.
Classifications of the Offense
Class C is when a person threatens another with bodily harm or causes physical contact in a provocative or offensive way, and no other aggravating factors are present.
Class B is when a person commits assault against someone who is a sports participant during a performance or in retaliation for a performance. This classification is specific to Texas.
Class A is when a person causes bodily injury to another and no other aggravating factors are present; or if a person causes physical contact in a provocative or offensive way against an elderly individual.
Penalties depend on class:
- C – fine up to $500
- B – up to 180 days in jail, fine of up to $2,000
- A – up to 1 year in jail, fine of up to $4,000
Did you threaten someone? Did you grab someone or push them? They are able to charge you with misdemeanor assault.
What Makes It A Felony?
Misdemeanors can become felonies through various factors. A third-degree felony in Texas is punishable with up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $10,000. You may be charged with a third-degree felony if:
- You have a previous domestic violence conviction and you commit assault against a family member or romantic partner, or;
- assault someone you know is a public servant or government contractor, or;
- assault an emergency worker or security guard while they are working.
If a weapon is used or serious injury occurs, you may be charged with aggravated assault, which is a second-degree felony in Texas. Because of this, you will need the best defense you can get.
Charged With Any of These Crimes?
You need a competent and experienced attorney to come to your defense. Contact Monks Law Firm by calling us at (713) 666-6657 or filling out our contact form on our website here. Don’t hesitate to call when you are caught with misdemeanor assault charges.