Texas aggravated assault charges can result in serious penalties, and one of the ways that an assault charge becomes an aggravated assault charge is when someone uses a deadly weapon during the assault. As aggravated assault charges are worse than assault charges, Texans should know what authorities consider a deadly weapon.
What Constitutes A Deadly Weapon in Texas?
Texas law defines a "deadly weapon" using three different criteria. The three criteria that determine a deadly weapon are:
- If it’s a firearm
- If it’s an item explicitly made to cause death or serious bodily injury
- If it’s an item used in a manner capable of causing death or serious bodily injury
It’s important to note that guns are always deadly weapons: even when not loaded.
Item Capable of Causing Death or Serious Bodily Injury
The most debated aspect of the deadly weapon definition is the use of items used in a manner capable of causing death or serious bodily injury. Under this part of the law, many ordinary items are considered deadly weapons based on the way they are used.
Courts consider the following aspects and more when determining if an item is a deadly weapon:
- The distance between the victim and the item;
- Words or threats said by the defendant during the assault;
- Physical characteristics of the item (butter knife vs. butcher knife);
- The damage inflicted with the item;
- How the defendant used the item.
Items that could be deadly weapons depending on the circumstances include:
- Thrown objects;
- Work tools.
Representing Assault with a Deadly Weapon Cases
If you’ve been charged with aggravated assault due to the use of a deadly weapon, Law Office of John L. Venza Jr. can help you fight for your case. With decades of criminal law experience, attorney John L. Venza Jr is the man you want by your side.
Call (281) 817-8737 now for a free consultation concerning your case!