Assault / Aggravated Assault
People can be charged with assault in Florida even when confrontations do not result in physical contact between the two parties. Assault is defined under state law as “an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.”
Most assault crimes are misdemeanor offenses, but criminal charges may be enhanced depending on the type of alleged victim. If an alleged offender is arrested for aggravated assault, then the crime is a felony offense.Lawyer for Aggravated Assault in Miami-Dade County, Florida
If you were recently arrested for alleged assault in Florida, you should seek legal representation as soon as possible. The Hoffman Firm helps clients accused of violent crimes all over Miami-Dade County, including such areas as Miami Beach, Hialeah, South Miami, Opa-locka, and many others.
Evan A. Hoffman is a criminal defense attorney in Miami who also has experience handling these cases as a former Assistant State Attorney. He can help you understand all of your legal options as soon as you call (305) 249-0090 to schedule a free consultation.
Overview of Assault Crimes in North Miami
- What is simple assault?
- How does an alleged offense become aggravated asasult?
- Where can I find more information about Miami-Dade County assault crimes?
Simple Assault Charges in Florida
In order for a person to be convicted of the basic criminal offense of assault under Florida Statute § 784.011, a prosecutor will need to prove the three following factors beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The alleged offender intentionally and unlawfully threatened, either by word or act, to do violence to the alleged victim;
- At the time, the alleged offender appeared to have the ability to carry out the threat; and
- The act of the alleged offender created in the mind of the alleged victim a well-founded fear that the violence was about to take place.
So-called simple assault is a second-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500. Simple assault charges may be enhanced to a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000 if the alleged victim is the member of a certain protected class of people under state law.
Chapter 784 of the Florida Statutes establish multiple assault offenses under which alleged offenders can be charged with the next highest degree of the crime if an alleged victim is any of the following:
- Ambulance driver;
- Any person 65 years of age or older;
- Any visitor or other detainee of a detention center or jail;
- Bus operator;
- Code inspector;
- Correctional officer at any prison or county jail;
- Elected official;
- Emergency medical technician (EMT);
- Employee of a specified department of government;
- Law enforcement officer;
- Medical director;
- Parole officer;
- Probation or community control officer;
- Public transit employee;
- Registered nurse (RN);
- Revenue or tax collector;
- School employee;
- Security personnel or security guard;
- Sports official; or
- Train operator.
Aggravated Assault Penalties in Miami-Dade County
Under Florida Statute § 784.021, an alleged offender can be charged with aggravated assault if he or she commits an assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill or with an intent to commit a felony. A weapon is considered a deadly weapon if it is used or threatened to be used in a way likely to produce death or great bodily harm.
Aggravated assault is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000. If the aggravated assault is committed on a member of one of the protected classes listed above, the crime is classified as a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
Additionally, Florida Statute § 784.07(2)(c) establishes that any aggravated assault upon a law enforcement officer will result in a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison. Under Florida Statute § 784.08, an alleged offender convicted of aggravated assault upon a person 65 years of age or older will be sentenced to a minimum of three years in prison, ordered to make restitution to the alleged victim, and to perform up to 500 hours of community service.
Florida Assault Resources
Citizens' Crime Watch — Citizens’ Crime Watch of Miami-Dade County is a 501(c)(3) non-profit countywide crime prevention program funded by the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners, grants and donations. On this website, you can learn more about the organization’s programs, staff, and upcoming events. You can also find crime prevention news and find links to the National Crime Prevention Council Newsletter and other crime prevention programs.
Citizens’ Crime Watch
1515 NW 79th Avenue
Miami, FL 33126
Chapter 784 of the Florida Statutes — You can view the full text of assault, aggravated assault, and other assault offense on this website. Additional specific types of assault include assault on a law enforcement officer, sexually violent predators detention or commitment facility staff, and persons 65 years of age or older. Certain statutes outline the reclassification of offenses and may also impose minimum sentences.
Were you arrested for an alleged assault in Florida? The Hoffman Firm can fight to get the criminal charges reduced or possibly even dismissed.
Miami criminal defense attorney Evan A. Hoffman represents clients in Key Biscayne, North Miami, Aventura, Coral Gables, and several other communities in Miami-Dade County. Call (305) 249-0090 or complete an online contact form today to receive a full review of your case during a free, confidential consultation.