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Explaining New Jersey Aggravated Assault Charges

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What is Aggravated Assault?

The charge of aggravated assault is serious and should not be ignored. When faced with such a charge you need to consult with an experienced attorney about your case and work hard to build a defense against the charges. The consequences can be severe if the charges lead to conviction. You could face years in prison and hefty fines that need to be repaid to the government. It’s important that you understand what a charge of aggravated assault can lead to in New Jersey.

What are the Grounds for an Aggravated Assault Charge?

In order for a court in New Jersey to find a defendant charged with aggravated assault guilty, the defendant must meet any of the following criteria:

  • Serious bodily injury was threatened or caused on purpose to another person by the defendant
  • Serious bodily injury was threatened or caused on purpose to another person by the defendant using a deadly weapon
  • Reckless bodily injury was caused to someone else by the defendant using a deadly weapon
  • A firearm was pointed directly at another person by the defendant, whether or not the victim knew the firearm was loaded or unloaded
  • An imitation firearm was used or pointed directly at a law enforcement officer and either threatened, intimidated, or caused physical bodily injury to the officer
  • Simple assault was committed against any of the following by the defendant during their scope of employment:
    • Firefighter
    • EMS
    • Police officer
    • Any private or public school employee
    • Correctional employee
    • DCF employee
    • Healthcare worker
    • Cable or utility worker
    • Psychiatric facility or hospital worker
  • Bodily injury was caused to someone else by the defendant while committing a crime or while trying to elude law enforcement
  • Bodily injury was caused to the public or first responders by the defendant when he or she purposely caused an explosion or started a fire
  • A laser system or other device was used by the defendant against a law enforcement officer

Aggravated Assault vs Simple Assault

Knowing the difference between aggravated assault and simple assault in New Jersey is vital to building a defense case to the charges levied against you. Simple assault in New Jersey is considered a misdemeanor crime and is often referred to as a disorderly persons offense. Aggravated assault is a crime in which the defendant can be indicted, which means that a felony charge can be levied against the defendant.

What is a Serious Bodily Injury?

Serious bodily injury is defined in New Jersey law as any injury that leads to extensive loss, permanent loss or impairment, permanent disfigurement, loss of the use of a body part of organ or an injury that leads to considerable risk of the victim dying because of the defendant’s actions.

The Penalties for Aggravated Assault in New Jersey

The penalties for aggravated assault in New Jersey are as follows:

  • 4th degree assault: a prison term of no more than 18 months and a fine of no more than $10,000
  • 3rd degree assault: a prison term ranging from three to five years and a fine of no more than $15,000
  • 2nd degree assault: a prison term ranging from five to ten years in prison and a fine of no more than $150,000

Contact an Experienced Morristown Criminal Defense Lawyer About Your Aggravated Assault Charges in New Jersey

Were you arrested or charged with aggravated assault in New Jersey? The consequences of a conviction could be severe, leaving you with a permanent criminal record and possibly even sending you to jail. That is why you need to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your case. The attorneys at Hanlon Dunn Robertson Schwartz have successfully represented clients charged with aggravated assault in Morristown and New Brunswick, and throughout New Jersey. Call 973-267-8895 or fill out the online contact form to schedule a consultation with a member of our legal team. We have an office conveniently located at 33 Market Street in Morristown, New Jersey, as well as offices in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

Disorderly conduct consists of any improper behavior such as fighting, threats of violence, or creating a dangerous atmosphere.

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