Written and edited by our team of expert legal content writers and reviewed and approved by Attorney Mark O’Mara
Content last updated on: March 24, 2023
Assault is a serious crime in Florida, and depending on whether the victim was injured, the age of the victim, and the instrument used to inflict injury, a defendant faces felony charges. There are two forms of assault: simple assault and aggravated assault. Both are serious crimes and the expert Orlando assault lawyers at the law offices of the O’Mara Law Group can help you today.
Under Florida state 784.011, simple assault, also just called assault, is a second degree misdemeanor. In order for a defendant to be found guilty of assault, the following must be true:
As you can see, no physical violence need have occurred in order for assault to be charged against you. Simply swinging a fist and missing the victim is assault. Shoving someone, who then flees but is uninjured, is assault. Threatening to shoot someone, even though you had no gun on you, during an argument face-to-face can be charged as assault if the other person did believe that you were armed. Simple assault is a Class 2 Misdemeanor, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a fine of $500.
Under Florida statute 784.021, aggravated assault is a third degree felony. The following elements are necessary in order to be charged with aggravated assault:
For the purposes of aggravated assault, virtually anything can be defined as a deadly weapon. This includes a chair, rock, club, firearm, glass bottle, knife, and anything else that could potentially take another’s life or cause serious bodily injury. Aggravated assault is a third degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Assault on a Senior Citizen
If aggravated battery is committed against a victim 65 years old or older, the defendant faces a mandatory three years of imprisonment under Florida state statute 784.08, and a maximum fine of $10,000. If found guilty, the defendant will also be ordered to pay restitution and complete 500 hours of community service. The felony is also increased to a second degree felony, which carries a maximum incarceration term of 15 years in prison. And in the case of simple assault, the third degree misdemeanor is raised to a first degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail. This is true even if the defendant did not have reason to know the victim’s age.
An Orlando Assault Defense Attorney is Here to Help
Because assault and aggravated assault are serious crimes, you need an attorney who will fight to have these charges dropped or the sentence drastically reduced. Common defenses to assault and aggravated assault include self defense, a lack of true intent to commit violence (for aggravated assault), and the lack of possession of a deadly weapon (for aggravated assault). Learn more about assault crimes with our frequent questions and answers page. Call the Orlando criminal lawyers of the O’Mara Law Group today at 407-413-882 to schedule a consultation.
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