Assault in Texas is identified in Penal password Chapter 22 and also covers whatever from a class C offensive touching to a first-degree aggravated assault punishable by approximately life in prison. The degree and also severity that Texas assault charges count on the offender’s mental state, the degree of the injury, and details characteristics that the alleged victim. In this article, we will break down the different species of Texas assault charges and also answer some commonly asked questions about criminal assault in Texas.

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What is an attack in Texas?

In Texas, the meaning of attack is an extremely broad and also covers a wide selection of behavior. Obviously, punching someone in the face or hitting who with an item constitutes assault. But did you recognize you can be charged with assault even if you didn’t actually touch another person? because that example, if friend spit top top someone, you deserve to be fee with class C misdemeanor assault. If girlfriend threaten to beat up who while hold a bat, you might potentially be charged through a second-degree felony assault.

Can i be fee with assault for by chance Hurting Someone?

It is definitely possible. If friend acted recklessly or to be negligent and someone acquired hurt, you could be fee with attack – also if you “didn’t median to.” Assault, like most other criminal offenses in Texas, calls for some kind of mental state. In Texas, culpable mental states include intentionally, knowingly, recklessly and also criminal negligence. Under Texas Penal code §6.03 a human acts:

Intentionally, or through intent, v respect to a result of his conduct as soon as it is his mindful objective or desire to communicate in the conduct or reason the result;

Knowingly, or with knowledge, through respect to a result of his conduct when he is aware that his command is reasonably details to reason the result; Recklessly, or is reckless, with respect to the result of his conduct when he is conscious of by consciously disregards a considerable and unjustifiable risk that the an outcome will occur. The risk have to be of such a nature and also degree the its neglect constitutes a pistol deprivation indigenous the traditional of treatment that one ordinary human being would practice under every the situations as viewed from the actor’s standpoint; Criminally negligent through respect come the result of his conduct when he must be mindful of a comprehensive and unjustifiable hazard that the circumstances exist or the an outcome will occur. The risk must be of together a nature and also degree the the fail to perceive it constitutes a gross deviation indigenous the conventional of treatment than one ordinary human being would practice under all the scenarios as perceived from the actor’s standpoint.

What are the penalty for attack in Texas?

As mentioned, Texas attack charges can variety from a course C ticket come a first-degree felony that can land who in jail because that the rest of his or her life. Here’s the breakdown of punishments ranges:

Class C Misdemeanor: approximately a $500 fine, no jail time. assault by hazard Class B Misdemeanor: as much as 180 work in jail, approximately a $2,000 fine, or both. Assault against a sporting activities participant Class A Misdemeanor: approximately one year in jail, as much as a $4,000 fine, or both. Indecent assault State jail Felony: in between 180 work to 2 years in a state jail, as much as a $10,000 fine, or both. Third-Degree Felony: between two to 10 year in prison, as much as a $10,000 fine, or both. basic assault against a security officer simple assault against emergency personnel basic assault against a pregnant woman Second-Degree Felony: in between two to two decades in prison, up to a $10,000 fine, or both. basic assault against a peace officer or a judge First-Degree Felony: in between five come 99 years in prison, as much as a $10,000 fine, or both.


Texas attack Charges

What is simple Assault or Misdemeanor Assault?

When civilization think that assault, they typically think that a violent confrontation between two or an ext people. Texas, however, has actually enacted laws in i beg your pardon a human being may be fee with attack in situations where aggravating factors, like violence or physics contact, space not present. A human commits a basic assault, or misdemeanor assault, by:

intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly resulting in bodily injury to another; intentionally or knowingly threatening one more with imminent bodily injury; or purposely or knowingly leading to physical contact with another, discovering or reasonably believing the call will be regarded as offensive or provocative.

The punishment for misdemeanor assault depends on the facts of the case.

→ attack by call in Texas

For example, a human who just threatens one more with bodily injury or reasons offensive contact commits a class C misdemeanor assault, punishable through a preferably $500 fine. This is referred to as attack by contact and also can stem indigenous spitting on someone or poking them in the chest.

→ assault Bodily Injury in Texas

A human who causes bodily injury to an additional commits assault bodily injury (ABI), which is a class A misdemeanor, punishable as much as one year in jail, as much as a $4,000 fine, or both.

For example, on December 3, 2020: Emmanuel Duron, a Texas high school football player to be ejected native a game by a referee. Once the possibility presented itself, Duron ran ~ above the field and also blindsided the referee, knocking him come the ground. Duron was charged v a course A misdemeanor attack because he caused bodily injury to another. Had actually he intimidated to hit the referee or touch him in a manner which was thought about offensive, Duron would have actually instead committed a class C misdemeanor assault.


Enhancements to assault Based top top Victim Characteristics

The punishment for attack bodily injury, generally a class A misdemeanor, deserve to be boosted or “enhanced” based upon a range of features of the alleged victim. For example, intentionally, knowingly or recklessly leading to serious bodily injury to a publicly servant, federal government official or paramedic is enhanced to a 3rd degree felony. The adhering to are assault bodily injury charge enhancements:

Assault on specific Government building contractors It’s a third-degree felony to attack a person who contracts v the federal government to do a business in a correctional, alcohol or drug treatment, or youth detention facility while functioning within the limit of the contract or in retaliation the the who actions in ~ the limit of the contract. Assault top top a defense Officer It’s a third-degree felony to attack a defense officer who is performing his or she duty. Assault ~ above Emergency Personnel It’s a third-degree felony to assault an emergency services personnel that is providing emergency services. Assault top top a Pregnant woman in Texas It’s a third-degree felony to attack a woman who is pregnant at the time of the offense.

Possible sentence on a 2nd degree felony

Assault top top a tranquility Officer or referee If the assault is committed against a human being the actor to know is a tranquility officer or judge while that or she is legitimate discharging an main duty or in retaliation of an official duty, the violation is a second-degree felony, punishable by two to twenty years in prison.

What is Aggravated Assault?

Aggravated assault is among the most common felony attack charges in Texas. Aggravated attack is encode in § 22.02 of the Texas Penal Code. An assault becomes aggravated if the defendant:

Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly reasons serious bodily injury to an additional person; or offers or exhibits a deadly weapon in the course of committing any type of assault crime, including threatening an additional with bodily injury or engaging in conduct the the victim will certainly likely discover offensive. → What is serious Bodily Injury in Texas?

In Texas, significant bodily injury is defined as bodily injury that creates a considerable risk of fatality or that causes death, permanent disfigurement, or protracted lose or disability of the role of any bodily member or organ. Instances of significant bodily injury include:

a knife wound the requires considerable medical treatment; paralysis; major burns transparent the body; loss of a body or limbs; injuries to the head, neck, or spine.

It is crucial to keep in mind that no all major injuries rise to the level of major bodily injury.

→ What is a fatal Weapon?

As mentioned, in Texas, a person deserve to be charged v a second-degree felony without in reality hurting someone. Merely threatening another, while holding a weapon, could an outcome in one aggravated assault charge.

In Texas, deadly weapon is defined as a firearm or noþeles manifestly designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting death or major bodily injury, or anything that in the path of its use or intended use is capable of causing death or severe bodily injury. Tools under this definition may include knives, clubs, bats, bricks, guns, and tire irons. A person’s hands or a pillowcase have the right to be thought about a weapon under this definition.

Generally, aggravated attack is a second-degree felony, however § 22.02 of the Texas Penal Code says that a human being commits aggravated assault in the first-degree if the violent violation is committed:

by a public servant acting under shade of the servant’s office or employment; versus a human being the actor knows is a public servant while the general public servant is legit discharging an main duty, or in retaliation of an exercise of official power together a publicly servant; the actor is in a engine vehicle, and knowingly discharges a firearm in ~ or in the direction that a habitation, building or vehicle, is reckless regarding whether the habitation, structure or automobile is occupied, and in discharging the firearm causes serious bodily injury to any person.

What is attack Family Violence?

In Texas, strikes accounted for 96 percent that all household violence cases in 2018, with an easy assaults accounting for 75.1 percent. When an attack causing bodily injury is against an intimate partner, family members member, or family member, it is classified together an assault family violence offense.

The very first time someone commits assault bodily injury against a family member (ABI-FM), that is a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and up to a $4,000 fine.

If someone commits aggravated assault versus an intimate partner, family members member, or family members member, the punishment selection increases come a first-degree felony – which, aside from funding punishment, is the most severe punishment variety a human can face in Texas.

What is continuous Violence against the Family?

If one offender commits one ABI-FM twice, within 12-months, the violation is share as constant Violence against the Family, a third-degree felony. A person deserve to be convicted of this violation without either assault having resulted in a conviction or even an arrest. Additionally, the two attacks need not have actually been committed against the exact same victim.

Furthermore, an offender that commits an ABI-FM will confront a third-degree felony if the offender has been previously convicted that at the very least one household violence offense in the past.

What is attack by Strangulation?

In 2009, the Texas Legislature enacted a law which amplified an ABI-FM indigenous a class A misdemeanor come a third-degree felony once the offense is committed by:

intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly impeding the common breathing or circulation of the blood that the person by applying pressure to the person’s throat or neck or by blocking the person’s sleep or mouth.

Any subsequent convictions of assault by strangulation room a second-degree felony. If, however, the offender has actually a household violence conviction top top his or she record, a first-time assault by strangulation violation is immediately a second-degree felony.

Common forms of strangulation are:

Manual: once pressure is used to the neck through hands, arms, or legs. For example, put the victim in a headlock or place hands approximately the victim’s neck or mouth. Ligature: when an object is offered to use pressure roughly the neck, which outcomes in an i can not qualify to breathe. Ligatures the are typically used include: ropes; cords; wires; and also shoe laces. Hanging: as soon as a human being is suspended v a ligature around his or she neck, i m sorry constricts due to the gravitational traction of a person’s very own body weight.

In Texas, a human being can likewise be charged with assault by strangulation by suffocating, or attempting to suffocate, another. Because that example, by covering someone’s confront with a pillow or place a plastic bag end someone’s head, subsequently restricting the person’s access to air.


What is Injury come a Child, yonsi Individual, or Disabled Individual?

The severity of straightforward assault considerably increases if the victim is a child, yonsi individual, or disabled individual due to the fact that these individuals cannot always protect themselves. In Texas, this offense is taken serious which is why a defendant found guilty that this offense might spend as much as 99 year in prison.

Texas Penal password § 22.04 says that a person commits this violation if he intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence, by act or omission, reasons a child, elderly individual, or disabled individual: significant bodily injury; serious psychological deficiency, impairment, or injury; or bodily injury.

In details situations, parents and caretakers may be criminally charged with injury to a child, yonsi individual, or disabled individual, through omission if they had actually a duty come act or had actually assumed care of the alleged victim.

For example, in October that 2020, a severely malnourished, 12-year old child was discovered in Conroe, Texas. The child, weighing in at approximately 50 pounds, had actually been deprived of food by his mother and also her boyfriend. The pair plead guilty come injury come a kid by omission, a first-degree felony, and also were every sentenced come 40 years in prison.

Furthermore, owners, operators, and employees that institutional treatment facilities may challenge criminal fees if the alleged victim is a resides of their facility as soon as the injury occurred. In Wichita Falls, a phibìc Texas State Hospital employee pled guilty to injury the a disabled person. The young man physically struck a resident of the team facility which resulted in a three-year sentence, suspended come probation.

The punishment variety for injury to a child, yonsei individual, or disabled individual different from a state jail felony come a first-degree felony based on the intent of the alleged offender and the degree of injuries sustained by the alleged victim:

claimed offender will certainly be charged v a state prison felony if he reasons bodily injury, recklessly or by omission, to a child, yonsei individual, or disabled individual, or if he causes serious bodily injury, serious mental deficiency, impairment, or injury, or bodily injury with criminally negligent actions. Claimed offender will certainly be charged with a third-degree felony if he deliberately or knowingly reasons bodily injury to a child, elderly individual, or disabled individual. Claimed offender will certainly be charged with a second-degree felony if the recklessly causes serious bodily injury or serious mental deficiency, impairment, or injury to a child, yonsi individual, or disabled individual, or if he deliberately or knowingly causes bodily injury come a disabled individual residing in a treatment facility and he is one employee that the basic whose project it was to carry out direct treatment for the victim. Claimed offender will certainly be charged with a first-degree felony if he intentionally or knowingly reasons serious bodily injury or serious mental deficiency, impairment, or injury come a child, yonsei individual, or disabled individual.

Texas Penal code §22.04(c) defines:

Child: a person 14 year of age or younger. Elderly Individual: a human being 65 years of age or older.

What is Indecent Assault?

Indecent assault is a relatively brand-new offense found in the Texas Penal code § 22.012 in September that 2019. A human being commits indecent assault, a class A misdemeanor, if without the various other person’s consent and with the will to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any type of person, the person:

touches the anus, breast, or any component of the genitals of one more person; touches an additional person v the anus, breast, or any component of the vul of any type of person exposes or attempts come expose another person’s genitals, pubic area, anus, buttocks, or female areola; or causes an additional person to call the blood, seminal fluid, vaginal fluid, saliva, urine, or feces of any type of person.

Prior come the enactment of this offense, touching an additional person there is no consent was classified as a course C misdemeanor. The violation was equivalent to that of a web traffic ticket, with no jail time repercussions. Indecent attack was spreading to to fill a void in sexual attack offenses, and also it did simply that. In spite of being a severe offense, indecent assault is not a registerable offense. This method that a person convicted that indecent assault is not forced to it is registered as a sex offender.

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How come Beat Texas assault Charges: Affirmative Defenses

There space a number of affirmative defenses that have the right to be supplied to negate criminal culpability:

Self-Defense: if it have the right to be presented that the victim initiated or furious the confrontation and also the defendant was specifically protecting him or herself, there is a opportunity charges might be dismissed. Declare self-defense calls for a reflecting that the defendant was endangered with unlawful force or harm, the victim initiated the an initial act of violence or presented a weapon during altercation, and the the defendant important responded appropriately. The defendant must show he or she offered a reasonable amount of pressure in defending him or herself. A self-defense insurance claim will no prevail if the defendant had the opportunity to run, call for help, escape, or end the altercation there is no the use of violence; Defense the Property: in minimal circumstances, a defendant might use deadly pressure to safeguard his or her residence. In Texas, this is well-known as the “stand your ground” law. A defense of property case is most successful once the defendant can present he or she was utilizing reasonable pressure in defending his or her home or vehicle; Defense of Others: in details situations, a defendant might be under a reasonable belief that force is necessary to defend another person. In Texas, bystanders can interfere in bespeak to safeguard a person if he or she sees the something is wrong. The essential requirements to create a successful Defense of Others claim vary native jurisdiction to jurisdiction. However, the dominion of ignorance for this type of defense, is the the defendant has actually no more right to protect a third party 보다 the 3rd party would to safeguard him or herself; mistake of Fact: sometimes the allegations room outright false. The police may have actually arrested the wrong person, the victim might have lied, or eyewitnesses can have defined the dorn culprit. Mistakes take place often, and with the aid of a an excellent defense attorney, a mistake of truth defense could lead to a dismissal the the case. As soon as using this defense, the is vital to include any corroborating evidence, or absence thereof. Because that example, if a weapon was allegedly used, was it uncovered at the crime scene?

Facing Texas assault Charges? contact Us

If girlfriend or a love one are facing Texas attack charges, that is an essential to have a tenacious and skilled representation. Contact today because that a cost-free strategy session through an experienced fort Worth criminal defense attorney. Contact us in ~ (817) 203–2220 or reach out online.