Assault is among the most commonly charged crimes in Pennsylvania, either as a Simple Assault or an Aggravated Assault; a charge of Harassment can also be included in some related situations.
In Pennsylvania, a charge of Simple Assault may be brought for:
- Attempting to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury to another;
- Negligently causing bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon;
- Attempting by physical menace to put another in fear of imminent serious bodily injury; or,
- Concealing or attempting to conceal a hypodermic needle and intentionally or knowingly penetrating a law enforcement office or during the course of a search or arrest.
Simple Assault charges are varied misdemeanor charges carrying penalties ranging from no more than one (1) year in jail to no more than five (5) years imprisonment.
Aggravated Assault charges can be brought forth if a person is accused of attempting to cause serious bodily injury to another, or causing such injury intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life. Also, a Simple Assault will be enhanced to an Aggravated Assault if a deadly weapon is alleged to have been used or if the alleged victim is a public official such as a police officer or a school teacher.
Aggravated Assault charges are varied felony charges carrying penalties ranging from no more than twenty (20) years to no more than ten (10) years’ imprisonment.
You can find yourself facing any of these charges simply by being in the wrong place at the wrong time, for example by defending yourself in a fight. Should that happen, contact AAAL as soon as possible. Being convicted of any “personal injury” offense such as these can have far-reaching negative consequences in your life and you should defend against such a charge vigorously.