Phoenix Assault Lawyer

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Phoenix Assault Attorney

Assault charges are not taken lightly by law enforcement in Phoenix. If you have been accused of physical, verbal, or sexual assault, you could be facing significant prison time, fines, and damage to your personal and professional life.

It is never in your best interest to combat these charges on your own. Rather, let a committed Phoenix assault lawyer evaluate your case, build a strong defense, and fight for you in court. Reach out today to speak with a skilled attorney at Grand Canyon Law Group.

DEFINING ASSAULT

Arizona Revised Statutes §13-1203 lays out the definition of assault. Under this statute, one could be charged with assault if they:

  • Intentionally or carelessly cause harm to another person,
  • Intentionally make someone afraid that they will suffer harm, or
  • Touch an individual with the intent to harm them.

Generally, assault charges are misdemeanors. However, when an alleged assault involves a deadly weapon, a vehicle, or occurs after trespassing, this is classified as aggravated assault, which is a felony. A knowledgeable Phoenix attorney can help someone charged with assault to understand the severity of their offense and the potential penalties associated.

POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES OF MISDEMEANOR ASSAULT CHARGES IN PHOENIX

Misdemeanor assault charges can fall into three classes. Intentionally causing harm to someone is a Class 1 misdemeanor and could result in six months in prison and a penalty of $2,5000. Deliberately making someone afraid that they will suffer harm is a Class 2 misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to four months in prison and a maximum fine of $750. A Class 3 misdemeanor could be charged when someone touches another person with the intention to injure or insult them. This is the least severe assault charge and is punishable by up to 30 days in prison and a fine of up to $500.

Each of these penalties is dependent on the charge being for a first offense. If an individual has been charged before, they could face enhanced punishments for assault.

WHEN DOES ASSAULT BECOME AGGRAVATED ASSAULT?

Aggravated assault occurs when a significant injury occurs or when the alleged offender uses a deadly weapon or other objects during the assault. Aggravated assault also includes any form of physical assault against a police officer or firefighter, a minor aged 15 years or below, and the kind that involves serious deformity.

CONSEQUENCES OF AGGRAVATED ASSAULT CHARGES

Penalties for aggravated assault can vary greatly given the nature of an alleged offense. When settling on a penalty, the court will evaluate the nature of the offense, the argument made, the suspect’s conduct, the complainant’s damages, the suspect’s criminal history, and many other considerations. The potential sentencing ranges for each level of felony assault are as follows:

  • Class 2 felonies– Prison time between three and 12.5 years
  • Class 3 felonies– Prison time between two years and eight years and nine months
  • Class 4 felonies– Prison time between one year and three years and nine months
  • Class 5 felonies– Prison time between six months and two and a half years
  • Class 6 felonies– Prison time between four months and two years

An individual convicted of assault can also face obligatory probation, community service, and restitution on top of prison time. It is important to keep in mind that these sentences apply to first-time charges only, and those with a criminal record could face increased penalties.

Any felony charge may jeopardize someone’s civil rights, such as their ability to vote and possess firearms. It is crucial to work with an experienced Phoenix attorney who can fight for reduced penalties and work to ensure a defendant’s way of life is protected.

THE ASSAULT ARREST PROCESS IN PHOENIX

Arrests often happen at the time of or shortly after the alleged assault, especially when it occurs in public. However, an arrest could also come hours or even days after a report is made to law enforcement. When someone is arrested for assault, they are generally read their Miranda rights. These rights include the right to an attorney and that anything they say can be held against them by the prosecution.

After the arrest, the person charged with assault will receive official notice of the impending criminal case. The name of this document varies depending on whether the person is in police custody. While some people accused of assault are held until their arraignment, others are released on their own recognizance pending trial.

ASSAULT COMPLAINTS AND SUMMONS

A person in custody receives a document known as a complaint. Anyone not in police custody is instead served with a summons. In either case, these documents provide a date and time for the accused to appear in court for the first time.

One of the most important pieces of information the accused will receive in a complaint or summons is the location of their arraignment hearing. Phoenix has multiple types of courts, including Superior Courts and Justice Courts. Most of the time, misdemeanor cases are heard in Phoenix Justice Courts. Anyone arrested for assault in Phoenix should contact our local attorneys to help prepare for the arraignment.

YOUR RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT

One of the most important things to remember during an assault arrest in Phoenix is the right to remain silent. Whether the police have mentioned this right or not, it is never a good idea to discuss any aspect of a criminal case with the police.

Anything the accused says to the police can be used in court. Admissions made by a defendant are often some of the strongest pieces of evidence raised by the state. It is vital to avoid saying anything after an assault arrest and instead ask to speak with a Phoenix lawyer.

WHAT TO DO AFTER AN ASSAULT ARREST

Once the police decide to make an arrest for assault, there are important steps to take to protect one’s rights and future. For instance, avoiding contact with the alleged victim while the case is pending is a good idea.

The most important step in this process is speaking to a skilled Phoenix attorney experienced in handling assault arrests. Seasoned legal counsel from the Grand Canyon Law Group can help build an airtight defense strategy and prevent a conviction.

If you have been charged with assault, you have the right to an attorney. The sooner you speak to legal counsel, the better your chances are of avoiding severe repercussions. The steps you take after an assault arrest in Phoenix could significantly impact the outcome of your case.

WHO CONDUCTS ASSAULT INVESTIGATIONS?

For the most part, assault investigations in Phoenix are handled by local police. Alleged acts of assault within the limits of the city are typically investigated by the City of Phoenix Police Department.

The city police primarily have jurisdiction in these cases, although there are exceptions. Some law enforcement officers, such as Arizona state troopers, could have statewide jurisdictions. There are also smaller police forces on some university campuses that could conduct an investigation.

No matter who oversees an assault investigation in Phoenix, the accused has the right to an attorney. It is best to seek legal counsel immediately instead of waiting for charges to be filed.

EVIDENCE IN ASSAULT INVESTIGATIONS

The investigations into assault allegations are not always extensive. Unlike financial crimes or murder investigations, these cases are frequently resolved with an arrest shortly after the alleged assault. In some cases, an assault will happen near the law enforcement officer that makes the arrest.

WITNESS TESTIMONY

When an alleged assault does not occur in front of a police officer, the first step in an investigation is generally an interview of the witnesses. This includes speaking with the alleged victim and any third parties present at the time. Before agreeing to any police interviews, suspects in assault investigations should retain a Phoenix lawyer.

ELECTRONIC EVIDENCE

In addition to witness testimony, the police often seek electronic evidence when pursuing an assault investigation in Phoenix. This could include security or cell phone camera footage of the incident as it happened. When this footage is clear, it can serve as strong evidence in the case.

These investigations also frequently include a review of electronic communication. Obtaining the records could provide the police with insight into what happened. For example, text messages to or from the accused could shed light on who was the aggressor or if the alleged assault actually occurred.

RELYING ON LEGAL COUNSEL DURING THE INVESTIGATIVE PROCESS

Many people have an instinct to defend themselves against allegations made by the police. However, the best way to deal with this type of investigation is to rely on the guidance of legal counsel. This means refusing to discuss any aspect of the case with the police without first consulting a Phoenix attorney experienced in handling assault investigations. Choosing to discuss the case with the investigating officer could have a detrimental effect on the case. In some situations, it might even lead to criminal charges.

If you are the subject of an assault investigation in Phoenix, it is important that you talk to a lawyer right away. The right attorney could help you avoid a conviction and resolve your case with minimal impact on your life.

SCHEDULE A FREE CONSULTATION WITH A PHOENIX ASSAULT ATTORNEY

At Grand Canyon Law Group, we understand the importance of giving every client the individualized help and enthusiastic representation they require. If you are facing assault charges and are unsure of who to turn to for help, we are here for you. Our team of committed defense attorneys have extensive experience in the courtroom and will fight tirelessly to get you the outcome you deserve. To discuss your case with a dedicated Phoenix assault lawyer, contact our office today.

Schedule A Consultation With The Grand Canyon Attorney Who Can Help