Simple assault is when you make an attempt to violently injure someone when you have the ability to do so. For example, attempting to punch someone can be considered simple assault, even if you do not make physical contact. Shoving someone can also be charged as simple assault. Simple assault does not even need to involve your own bare hands. You can be charged with simple assault for throwing rocks or even a drink at someone. So long as you had the intent and the ability to place someone in fear of bodily harm, you can face criminal charges.
Aggravated assault is a much more serious form of assault that is magnified by the presence of one or more “aggravating” factors. Consequently, a conviction would result in a much more severe punishment. While simple assault is a misdemeanor, aggravated assault is a wobbler that can be charged as either a felony or misdemeanor.
Some of the factors that could elevate an assault charge to aggravated are:
- Causing great bodily harm
- Using a firearm or other deadly weapon
- Assaulting certain people, such as a school employee, peace officer, firefighter, or a police officer
- Committing assault in the commission of another crime
While simple assault can lead to a jail sentence of up to six months, aggravated assault is punishable by up to a year in prison. You are much more likely to receive a jail sentence for an aggravated assault. How the crime is charged will greatly impact the consequences that you may face.
Contact a Marin County Criminal Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with a crime, you need a diligent and tough criminal defense lawyer – and that is what we are at the Mason Law Office. To discuss your case, you can send us a message or call us today at 833.774.0602.