Bodily Assault in Tarrant County
In Tarrant County, if law enforcement have “probable cause” that you have caused physical harm to another human, purposefully or even unintentionally, you may be arrested for bodily injury.
Assault allegations do not always have to include an apparent injury to be taken seriously. For this reason, it is critical to know your rights and enlist the help of an experienced Tarrant County Defense Attorney who can help you avoid jail time and other undesirable outcomes.
It may be that you were pressed to action to defend yourself, others, or your property, but without an Arlington Texas Criminal Attorney to navigate the legal proceedings, you could be looking at fines up to $4000 and up to a year in jail. Other circumstances can easily take an assault case from a misdemeanor crime to a felony, with much more serious consequences.
What is Bodily Assault?
Bodily Assault means you caused injury or pain to another person. There are three levels of culpability (or personal responsibility) connected to bodily assault charges in Tarrant County:
Intentionally causing injury: This is the most serious bodily assault charge. “Intentional” means you purposefully set up to hurt someone and took action to injure your intended victim. For example, if you punched someone in the face, you intended to cause them pain and so have intentionally hit them to cause them pain.
Knowingly causing bodily injury: Knowingly causing bodily injury means that you were reasonably sure that your action would harm someone else. This is a slippery slope, and many people find themselves being prosecuted for this in situations that they did not feel was intentional. For example, if you throw a glass bottle at someone and it injures them, you probably knew that was a possibility when you threw the bottle. Often actions that could be classified as “knowingly causing bodily injury” can be presented by Tarrant County prosecutors as intentional.
Recklessly causing bodily injury: When you recklessly cause bodily injury, it means you engaged in a high-risk behavior that you knew had a good possibility of harming someone else. Driving your vehicle in a way that neglects basic safety rules and causing harm to another person, though not a planned or desired outcome, could qualify as reckless bodily assault.
What type of probable cause is needed for an arrest?
Aside from a victim stating that you caused them pain, very little probable cause is needed to make an assault arrest. Sometimes the infraction or misunderstanding can be so minor that the victim does not realize the seriousness of the situation and may not realize that a minor misunderstanding can have long term consequences for the accused party.
How long after the event can I be prosecuted for bodily assault in Ft. Worth, Arlington or surrounding areas?
The statute of limitations for bodily assault in Tarrant County is 2 years.
What is the punishment for bodily assault?
If you have not been convicted of an assault, and the only charge is bodily assault or bodily assault on a family member, the punishment is a fine up to $4000 and/or up to one year in jail. However, extenuating circumstances such as previous convictions, use of a deadly weapon, assault of an officer or security guard, aggravated assault, sexual assault or intoxication assault can bump the assault up to a felony crime. It is important to call a Tarrant County Criminal Defense Lawyer to help you discern the seriousness of your case.