Under Rhode Island Criminal law, Felony Assault may be found at Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-5-2. This felony offense is also commonly known as Aggravated Assault. This offense penalizes the conduct of an assault or battery by means of a dangerous weapon, dangerous substance, or the occurrence of serious bodily harm.
The law defines “serious bodily injury” as physical injury that either:
- creates a substantial risk of death
- causes protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily part member or organ
- causes serious permanent disfigurement
A “Bodily injury” means physical injury that causes physical pain, illness, or any impairment of physical condition.
What are the Legal Elements for Felony Assault
In order to be convicted of Felony Assault, there must exist strong evidence of the following legal elements:
- that the defendant committed an assault or battery against another person
- the defendant did so voluntarily
- the assault or battery was not the result of a mistake or an accident
- the victim suffered serious bodily injury as a result of the assault or battery
Potential Punishment if Convicted of Felony Assault in Rhode Island
Under Rhode Island law, a conviction for Felony Assault is a Felony. The sentence a defendant faces will depend on whether serious bodily injury occurred, bodily injury occurred, or no injury occurred. If serious bodily injury occurred the defendant shall be sentenced to a term in prison of not more than 20 years. For all other Felony Assaults which result in bodily injury or no injury, the defendant shall be sentenced to a term in prison of not more than 6 years. This penalty may be found at Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-5-2. Additionally, if the Felony Assault was committed against a family or household member, the defendant may face additional Domestic Violence consequences set forth in Rhode Island General Laws, Section 12-29-5.
Assault offense punishments vary if the victim is of a specific status. For example, an assault or battery on a severely impaired person is considered a felony and carries a term of prison not to exceed 5 years. If the impaired victim sustained serious bodily injuries than the person will face not less than 2 years but not more than 20 years in prison. If the assault and battery was upon a police officer while that police officer was engaged in the performance of his or her duty, a person can face up to 3 years in prison. Another example is if the assault and battery was committed upon a person who was 60 years of age or older. If the elderly victim sustained bodily injury, a person can face imprisonment for up to 5 years, but if the elderly victim sustained serious bodily injury, a sentence of not less than 3 years but no more than 20 may be imposed.
If you have been charged with a Felony Assault offense and need representation, contact the Rhode Island Assault Defense Attorneys at the Law Office of John L. Calcagni III by email or call today at (401) 351-5100 to schedule a free consultation.