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Assault With A Deadly Weapon

Former Sr. Prosecutors Now Assault With A Deadly Weapon Defense Attorneys

Being charged with assault is always serious, but if the prosecution upgrades your charge to assault causing great bodily injury, you face the possibility of felony conviction, with even stiffer penalties. At Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP, our former prosecutors advocate for justice in your case. If it is in your best interests, we negotiate for the prosecution to drop your charges to simple assault. Or we may recommend you fight your charges at trial to demand the prosecution meet its burden of proof.

What is great bodily harm?

Under California Penal Code Section 12022.7, an assault causing great bodily harm leaves its victims with “significant or substantial physical injury.” The penalties for such assaults may be enhanced depending upon the severity of the injuries, which do not have to be life-threatening or permanent but must be more than just minor or incidental. Examples of great bodily harm include:

  • Head trauma
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Paralysis
  • Nerve damage
  • Fractures
  • Third-degree burns
  • Deep bruising
  • Vaginal laceration from rape and other violent injuries

Although many gunshot and stab wounds automatically fall into this category, injuries inflicted with fists, kicks or grabs are often less clear-cut but still carry serious penalties.

What an assault with a deadly weapon charge means

A simple assault is the unlawful attempt to injure or threaten to injure another person who believed you had the immediate capacity to do so. Your charges are generally upgraded to aggravated assault — or assault with a deadly weapon (ADW) — if you are also accused of using a deadly weapon, such as a firearm or knife, to commit the crime. You can also be charged with ADW for threatening the alleged victim with any instrument likely to inflict great bodily injury. Under California law, an aggressive dog, a heavy vase, a broken bottle, your fists, or any blunt or sharp object can be construed as an instrument likely to inflict great bodily injury.

Charges of ADW and battery in an assault with a deadly weapon offense

Great bodily injury is built into the charge of assault with a deadly weapon, so if you’re convicted of ADW, you may be subject to the enhanced penalties of assault causing great bodily harm. Because this charge also indicates the illegal use of force or violence, a battery charge typically accompanies an assault causing great bodily harm enhancement.

Learn how a victim’s alleged injury can affect the severity of your assault charges

To learn more about fighting allegations of assault causing great bodily injury, call Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP at 888-579-4844 or contact us online. We explain your rights and options at your free initial appointment. Our team is ready to help you 24/7.