Have you been charged with assault with a deadly weapon in Dayton, OH? In Ohio, this type of violent crime can be charged under three different statutes, but all come with harsh penalties. With your freedom, rights, and future on the line, you deserve an aggressive legal defense.
Suhre & Associates, LLC has represented clients in Montgomery County facing felony assault charges for over 20 years. Call our law office today for a free case review with an experienced Dayton assault with a deadly weapon attorney. We will help you explore your best defense options.
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How Suhre & Associates, LLC Can Help After You’re Arrested for Assault with a Deadly Weapon in Dayton
Violent crimes like assault with a deadly weapon are punished harshly under Ohio law. Prosecutors are rarely sympathetic and often seek the maximum penalties allowed. Law enforcement may also use the circumstances of your incident to pursue more serious charges, such as upgrading a simple assault to felony assault. You deserve an experienced Dayton criminal defense attorney to serve as your legal advocate.
Suhre & Associates, LLC has over 100 years of combined legal experience. Our Dayton criminal defense attorneys include a former prosecutor and a former police officer. We use this insight to build the strongest possible legal defenses for our clients.
When you hire Suhre & Associates, LLC to represent you in your assault case in Dayton, Ohio, you can trust in us to:
- Provide the legal advice and guidance you need to make informed decisions about your case
- Protect your constitutional rights
- Build a strong defense strategy based on expert testimony, cross-examination, evidentiary challenges, exculpatory evidence, evidence suppression, and other defense tactics
- Seek a dismissal of the charges if possible
- Negotiate a plea deal on your behalf when it is in your best interest
- Present a persuasive argument in the courtroom to seek a not guilty verdict or an acquittal
- Argue for the most lenient sentencing possible if convicted
Do not face serious assault charges alone. Call Suhre & Associates, LLC today for a free case review with a Dayton assault defense lawyer ready to give you the aggressive defense you need.
Overview of Assault with a Deadly Weapon in Ohio
Assault is the most common violent criminal charge in Ohio. Some states charge assault and battery separately. Ohio combines these two offenses into a single crime.
Technically, “assault” refers to intentionally causing someone to fear imminent harm. “Battery” refers to negligently or intentionally causing physical harm or offensive physical contact to another.
This means that assault in Ohio does not need to involve any actual injury or physical contact. Credible threats can constitute an assault, particularly if the alleged perpetrator is holding a deadly weapon.
Under Ohio law, assault can be classified as:
- Assault or simple assault
- Felonious assault
- Aggravated assault
- Negligent assault
The type of assault charge you face depends on the circumstances and whether the assault caused injury. Simple assault is generally a misdemeanor. Assault with a deadly weapon is a felonious assault in Ohio.
Assault with a deadly weapon or dangerous implement can be an aggravated, felonious, or negligent assault under Ohio law. These forms of assault are similar, but the state of mind and intent are different. The penalties for aggravated assault are less severe than those for felonious assault.
Note that a deadly weapon is defined as any device, instrument, or object that is capable of inflicting pain and is:
- Used or possessed as a weapon or
- Adapted or designed for use as a weapon
This means a deadly weapon can be a firearm, vehicle, knife, baseball bat, or even objects like a lamp, rock, or pen if used as a weapon.
Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon
Ohio classifies a felonious assault as “aggravated” when it is committed after serious provocation and causes sudden rage or passion. Under ORC 2903.12, this provocation must be sufficient to reasonably incite someone into using deadly force.
This type of assault is further defined as knowingly:
- Causing serious physical injury to another person or an unborn child, or
- Causing or attempting to cause physical injury to another or an unborn child with a deadly weapon or ordnance.
Note that the addition of a deadly weapon or dangerous object means actual physical injury does not need to occur.
Aggravated assault is a fourth-degree felony. However, it can be upgraded to a third-degree felony if the victim is a peace officer or investigator with the Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
Felonious Assault with a Deadly Weapon
Felonious assault is more serious than aggravated assault. It involves intentional action rather than provocation and a heightened emotional state. Under ORC 2903.11, someone commits felonious assault if they knowingly cause serious physical harm to someone else.
It can also be committed if you attempt to cause serious physical injury to another person or unborn child with a dangerous weapon. As with aggravated assault, felonious assault can be charged even if you do not actually cause injury.
Felonious assault is typically a second-degree felony in Ohio. However, it is elevated to a first-degree felony when committed against a peace officer or investigator with the Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
Negligent Assault with a Deadly Weapon
Under ORC 2903.14, negligent assault happens when someone causes physical harm to another negligently with a deadly weapon or ordnance. Accidental discharge of a firearm is a common example.
This is a third-degree misdemeanor.
What Are the Penalties for Assault with a Deadly Weapon in Dayton, Ohio?
The penalties for assault with a deadly weapon in Ohio depend on whether the assault is aggravated or felonious, whether injury occurred, and your prior criminal record.
You may face the following number of years in prison depending on the charge:
- Negligent assault, third-degree misdemeanor: up to 60 days in jail and up to $500 in fines
- Aggravated assault, fourth-degree felony: 18 months to 6 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines
- Felonious assault, second-degree felony: 2 to 8 years in prison and fines up to $20,000
- Felonious assault, first-degree: up to 11 years in prison
Under an Ohio law passed in 2019, most second-degree and first-degree felonies are punishable with an indefinite sentence with a range of years. A judge can choose a minimum sentence of 2 to 8 years for a second-degree felony. An additional 50% is added for a maximum term.
A felonious or aggravated assault conviction may require a mandatory prison sentence under Ohio’s felony sentencing guidelines. If you knew the victim was pregnant at the time of the assault, there is a 30-day mandatory jail term. For aggravated assault on a peace officer, the mandatory prison sentence may be 7 years. Domestic assault with a deadly weapon can also require a mandatory prison term.
If the deadly weapon used in a felonious assault was a motor vehicle, you can also be punished with a class two suspension of your driver’s license or CDL if convicted.
What Defenses Can Be Raised if I’m Accused of Assault with a Deadly Weapon in Dayton, OH?
When you are charged with assault with a deadly weapon, the prosecution has the burden of proving every element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.
There may be many assault defense strategies available to you, including:
- Mistaken identity
- False allegations
- Self-defense or the defense of another
- Lack of intent. This may be applicable if you did not make credible threats, brandish a weapon, attempt to, or actually cause injury. If you caused an injury by accident, it is not a crime. If an injury occurred due to negligence with a deadly weapon, we may seek to have the charge reduced to negligent assault, a misdemeanor.
- Deadly weapon was not used. Any item can be classified as a deadly weapon, but the object must be used or possessed in a way to make it a weapon. If you were merely holding an object, a simple assault or even an argument should not be upgraded to felonious assault. This may be a valid legal defense.
At Suhre & Associates, LLC, we will carefully investigate the circumstances of your arrest. If your constitutional rights were violated or you were subjected to police misconduct, we will seek suppression of the evidence.
Contact a Dayton Assault with a Deadly Weapon Lawyer for a Free Case Review
Assault with a deadly weapon is a serious offense in Dayton that may be punishable by 2 to 11 years. It can be very easy to face a serious assault charge after a heated argument or fight, but violent crimes in Ohio are punished severely. At Suhre & Associates, LLC, we will help you fight for your freedom and your rights.
Contact our law firm today for a free consultation with a Dayton assault with a deadly weapon lawyer to discuss how we can help you.