Assault is a serious crime that is subject to both fines and jail time under California law. However, the degree of the punishment depends on whether the accused individual committed simple or aggravated assault. Simple assault, which is defined in California Penal Code 240, is the unlawful attempt to attack another person and cause an injury. The person carrying out the simple assault must also have the physical capacity to do so. A person who is convicted of simple assault may be sentenced to six months in jail, ordered to pay a $1,000 fine, or both.
Aggravated assault includes any intention to injure another person by use of a deadly weapon. This often involves a firearm, but not always. California Penal Code 245 states that a person can be charged with aggravated assault if he or she committed an act of violence with a deadly weapon that was likely to cause great bodily harm to someone else. The punishment for this crime ranges from two to four years in state prison or one year in a county jail. The judge may also require payment of a fine up to $10,000.
Whether the assault is simple or aggravated, punishments may be more severe when the attack was against a peace officer or other public servant.
The Prosecution Must Prove Its Case
It is natural to feel anxious when you have been charged with either simple or aggravated assault. Just keep in mind that a charge does not automatically mean you are guilty. The burden is still on the prosecution to prove that you intended to hurt someone else and it was not a matter of self-defense. At The Law Office of Nicolai Cocis, we work hard to uncover every possible defense to your assault charge. To learn more about our legal defense strategies, please contact us to schedule your initial consultation.
Our office is located near the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta, California. We represent individuals charged with Criminal Offenses, DUI and Juvenile Matters in the Temecula, Murrieta, Menifee, Winchester, Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Corona and Riverside areas.