Crime scene tape to represent a personal injury assault case

Known for beautiful bayous and affordable living, Houston is an attractive destination for residents and visitors alike. It is also relatively safe compared to other large U.S. cities. However, violent crimes are not unheard of, and when you are the victim of assault, you need the qualified personal injury attorneys at Hernandez Sunosky LLP to help you fight back.

In the state of Texas, assault is a serious crime that can have significant penalties, depending on the severity of the charges. When you are assaulted, it can turn your life upside down. Whether your assailant is a family member, you are a public servant attacked while on duty, or you are the victim of a sexual assault, you have options to seek justice.

If you are a Houston resident ready to face your attacker, seek compensation for the harm done to you, and get your life back, the compassionate and experienced Personal Injury attorneys at Hernandez Sunosky are here to deliver the support, guidance, and representation you need. Contact us now to schedule your free consultation.

Understanding Assault

Under the Texas Penal Code, assault could include instances in which an offender intentionally or knowingly:

  • Causes bodily injury to another
  • Threatens another with imminent bodily injury
  • Creates physical contact knowing the other person will view it as offensive

This could impact family members, dating partners, or public servants, among others. It could also cover a wide range of criminal activities, such as threats of bodily harm, minor or serious injury, or sexual assault. Thus, there are several types of assault, and they fall into unique legal categories.

Different Types of Assault

Texas recognizes both misdemeanor and felony assault, as well as sexual assault. Before you proceed with a lawsuit to recover damages, it is important to understand the different types of assault charges.

Class C Misdemeanor Assault

This is a form of assault that causes no bodily injury. It could include creating a reasonable fear of harm. Alternatively, it might involve recklessly causing physical harm without the intent to harm, such as by throwing an object that accidentally hits someone. Spitting in another person’s face or throwing a drink at them could fall under this classification as well.

Class A Misdemeanor Assault

Assault charges become more serious as the severity of outcomes increases. This is why any assault that results in bodily injury, however minor, is bumped up to a Class A misdemeanor.

Third-Degree Felony Assault

An assault becomes a felony when resulting injuries are more serious or certain types of people are involved. A third-degree felony assault includes instances of family violence (including spouses and significant others). It can also occur in cases of bodily injury involving:

  • Public servants
  • Security officers
  • Government employees
  • Emergency service personnel

Physical attacks against these groups that involve bodily injury, including cases of choking or otherwise blocking the airway, rise to the level of felony assault.

Second-Degree Felony Assault

An aggravated assault is any occurrence that involves the use of a deadly weapon while issuing or carrying out a threat of harm. When this happens, it becomes an automatic second-degree felony.

First-Degree Felony Assault

This level of charge is reserved for aggravated assault resulting in serious bodily harm to a family member or dating partner, as well as uniformed or on-duty:

  • Public servants
  • Security officers
  • Peace officers
  • Witnesses to crimes
  • Informants or others reporting on crimes

It is the most serious assault charge reserved for the most severe crimes. In Texas, a conviction on a first-degree felony assault charge entails a minimum sentence of five years in prison with a maximum of life. Other penalties, including fines up to $10,000, are also possible.

Sexual Assault

More commonly referred to as rape, sexual assault is a form of second-degree felony assault. Aggravated sexual assault is a first-degree felony.

What to Do if You Are the Victim of Assault

If you have suffered an assault, the first step you should take is to try to reach safety and seek medical help if needed. Although it can be difficult to think clearly, your next step is to try to preserve any evidence that could help in both criminal and civil proceedings.

You should speak with a qualified attorney as soon as possible as well. This professional can guide you through the process of filing reports, gathering evidence, and fighting for compensation in your case.

How Hernandez Sunosky Can Help You

Whether your assailant is convicted of a crime stemming from your assault or not, you may pursue a civil lawsuit to seek compensation for economic and non-economic damages in Texas. First, you need a qualified attorney committed to helping you seek justice — one who will treat you with compassion and provide needed support.

The personal injury attorneys at Hernandez Sunosky, LLP are available to assist Houston, TX, residents who have suffered assault. Contact us now to schedule your free consultation and discover how we can help you.

Based in Kingwood, Hernandez Sunosky LLP serves clients in Houston, Atascocita, Humble, New Caney, Porter, Pearland, and across Texas. Our experienced personal injury attorneys are here to support you in your time of need, providing the guidance you require to seek justice and compensation.