Aggravated Assault

An aggravated assault is a type of assault. The difference between common assault and aggravated assault is that the latter is an assault that wounds, maims, disfigures or endangers the life of another person. Under Canadian law, female genital mutilation is also considered to be a form of this offence.

What is the maximum penalty for aggravated assault?

The maximum penalty for aggravated assault is fourteen (14) years in jail. There is no mandatory minimum penalty for this offence. In addition, a person convicted of this offence is subject to a mandatory DNA order. In some cases the court must order a weapons prohibition as part of the sentencing for this offence.

What defences are available for an aggravated assault charge?

Unlike common assault, consent is not an available defence to this criminal act. A person cannot consent to being seriously injured, which is part of the definition of an aggravated assault. If, however, you were involved in a consensual fight and did not intend to cause bodily harm, consent may serve as a defence.

Self-defence may also serve as a defence to an aggravated assault charge. However, the harm avoided by committing an aggravated assault must be proportional to the harm caused by the aggravated assault. This is because this type of assault, by its definition, results in serious injury, the harm avoided must have been serious as well.

What Does it Mean to Wound Maim or Disfigure?

To wound someone means to break their skin or cut the skin in a way that is not minor. A scratch or a tiny cut would not count as wounding. In order for wounding to occur it is usually serious and permanent. Maiming refers to damage to a person’s body that makes it less likely for the person who sustained the injury to fight. Disfiguring requires something that is more than temporary.

What Does it Mean to Endanger?

Endangerment relates to the consequences of the harms suffered. A mere risk of consequence or potential for a serious consequence is not enough for endangerment.

Protect Your Rights

If you have been charged with this offence, your best approach to the situation is to consult with effective legal counsel. Lakin Afolabi is a criminal lawyer in who has won acquittals for many individuals facing difference charges including this one. Contact him today for a consultation.