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Charges & Penalties For Assaulting A Police Officer In Texas

Posted on March 21, 2023 in

For the most part, assault is a crime that is considered a misdemeanor. But there are situations where an assault offense turns into a felony. One of those situations involves assaulting a police officer. Being accused of assaulting a police officer is as serious as it sounds. If you’ve been accused of this offense, here are some penalties you may face, as explained by the Law Office of David A. Breston.

What Happens if You Assault a Texas Police Officer

Texas is a state that does not take assault lightly. When a police officer has been assaulted, the penalties become harsher. Instead of classifying your assault charge as a misdemeanor, your charge may be classified as one of the following:

  • First-degree felony. This is the most serious type of felony involving the harshest penalties.
  • Second-degree felony. While not as harsh as first-degree, this type of felony also involves more serious penalties.
  • Third-degree felony. This is the least serious of the felonies but can still result in grim penalties.

Texas Penal Code § 22.01(b)(1) states that anyone who assaults a police officer while on the job will be charged with a third-degree felony.

How Texas Handles Felony Assault Charges

Being convicted of assaulting a police officer will result in serious consequences. As far as prison time, you may face anywhere from 2 to 10 years in prison. You may also be required to pay up to $10,000 in fines.

Even direr, this charge will remain on your permanent record. When it’s time for you to search for housing or employment, this charge will appear on your background check.

Factors that Affect Felony Assault Penalties

As harsh as these penalties are, they can become worse. Your penalties may increase depending on other factors. Some of these factors include:

  • The amount of harm you cause to the police officer
  • Your past criminal history
  • The motivation behind your offense
  • The use of a weapon
  • The amount of danger you impose on the police officer and the public

Because police officers are respected public servants, every aspect of your case will be judged heavily.

Exercise Your Rights When Facing Felony Assault Charges

Being charged with the assault of a police officer can change your life. If convicted, that’s nearly a decade in prison for what you are facing. As serious as this charge is, you still have the right to defend yourself. Most importantly, there are a couple of defenses that you can use to help defend yourself. Our Houston assault attorneys list some of the most common defenses for assaulting an officer:

  • Constitutional violations. Your constitutional rights should not be violated, whether you were committing a crime or not. A police officer may have violated your constitutional rights while trying to apprehend you.
  • Self-defense. The police officer may have provoked you. For this defense to be effective, you may have to prove that the police officer started the altercation. You may also have to justify using force against the police officer.
  • Defense of others. This defense is an extension of self-defense. It argues that you may have acted illegally only because there was immediate and perceived harm to other people.

Speak With a Houston Assault Lawyer Today

When you have been accused of felony assault, there are defenses you can use to have your charges reduced or dismissed. Consult with an assault lawyer from the Law Office of David A. Breston today. Call our office, or submit our contact form to schedule an appointment.