Click Here for Free Consultation

Vehicular Aggravated Assault – ARS 13-1204

Watch this short video where David explains Vehicular Aggravated Assault in Arizona:

Whether in the Phoenix area, or anywhere in Arizona, per A.R.S. §13-1204 Aggravated Assault normally occurs in one of two ways:

  1. intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing serious physical injury or substantial disfigurement to another, or
  2. using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument (i.e., a car) to intentionally place somebody in imminent fear of serious physical injury.

Vehicular Aggravated Assault typically is charged if somebody is drunk behind the wheel of a car and has an accident which results in serious physical injury or substantial disfigurement to another person, because a car qualifies as a “dangerous instrument.” In order to convict upon this charge in category #1, the prosecutor must show that the defendant’s driving was reckless and caused serious injury to somebody.  In order to convict on category #2, the prosecutor must show that the defendant intended to seriously injure someone with his/her car, or the defendant wanted to scare someone with his/her car.

Vehicular Aggravated Assault Dismissed Vehicular Aggravated Assault Reduced Vehicular Aggravated Assault Precharge Victories

Possible Punishment for Aggravated Assault

If any Aggravated Assault is committed while using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument (i.e., a car), then the mandatory range of punishment on a first offense class three (3) “dangerous” felony is five (5) years minimum; seven and one half (7.5) presumptive; and fifteen (15) years maximum. If the victim is under fifteen (15) years of age, or is a police officer, then it is a class two (2) felony and the prison time increases to seven (7) years minimum; ten and one half (10.5) presumptive and twenty-one (21) years maximum.

If the Aggravated Assault does not involve the use of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument (i.e., if a jury determines your car is not a dangerous instrument) but still caused serious physical injury or substantial disfigurement, then the crime is classified as a class three (3) “non-dangerous” felony and the potential sentence drops. The range of punishment on the class three (3) “non-dangerous” felony is anywhere from probation with zero (0) days in jail up to one (1) year in jail; or prison from two (2) years to eight and three-quarters (8.75) years incarceration. If the person has one (1) allegeable historical prior conviction then the “prison only” range is three and one half (3.5) years to sixteen and one quarter (16.25) years of incarceration. If the person has two (2) allegeable historical prior convictions, then the “prison only” range is seven and one half (7.5) years to twenty-five (25) years of incarceration.

If the Aggravated Assault does not involve serious physical injury to the alleged victim, but only involves temporary but substantial disfigurement, or a fracture of any body part, then the range of punishment on this class four (4) “non-dangerous” felony is probation with zero (0) days in jail to one (1) year in jail; or prison from one (1) to three and three-quarters (3.75) years. If the person has one (1) historical allegeable prior conviction, then the “prison only” range is two and one quarter (2.25) years to seven and one half (7.5) years of incarceration. If the person has two (2) historical allegeable prior convictions, then the “prison only” range is six (6) to fifteen (15) years of incarceration.

Click Here to Get a Free Case Consultation.

Possible Defenses for Aggravated Assault

In order to fight this Vehicular Aggravated Assault charge, it needs to be shown that the defendant did not intend to hurt, threaten or scare anyone with his car. Additionally, it must be shown that the defendant was not recklessly driving his car. The standard of “recklessness” in Arizona is that the defendant was aware of, and consciously disregarded, a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the result would occur or that a dangerous circumstance existed. The risk must be of such a nature and degree that disregard of such risk constitutes a gross deviation from the standard of conduct that a reasonable person would observe in the situation. In plain language, this means that the prosecutor will try to put forth various reasons why the defendant acted or drove unreasonably, most often focusing on any speeding, alcohol intake, or any drug use by the defendant. Using forensic investigative techniques, it is our job to refute the state’s evidence that any of those factors occurred the way the prosecution has described. We accomplish this goal by highlighting the unreliability of the state’s forensic techniques and experts. We also need to emphasize in our defense that even if the evidence presented by the state is true as to the defendant’s condition or the way the accident occurred, that the defendant’s conduct was not unreasonable. Additionally, a good defense team should attempt to show that the accident was the other person’s fault, or at least not the fault of the defendant. This can be accomplished by interviewing witnesses and examining the mechanics of the cars to identify any manufacturing defects that could have contributed to the accident.

Click Here… For the DUI section if your case
also involved alcohol.


In order to fight this Vehicular Aggravated Assault charge, and any other criminal charges that you might face, as your attorneys we would assert a number of various other defenses designed to protect your constitutional rights. One of those we frequently assert is a “Miranda rights violation.” In Arizona, the standard of whether any inculpatory statement (i.e., a statement which tends to admit guilt) is admissible into evidence is based upon a “voluntariness” standard. If we can demonstrate that the police coerced you (i.e., intimidated or tricked you) into making a confession or inculpatory statement, or that they did not properly read you your Miranda Rights, then we can suppress those statements and any evidence gathered as a direct result of those statements.

In addition, the “denial of right to Counsel” is another common defense which is often raised. This occurs when a suspect is in custody and requests to speak to their Attorney, but is denied and questioning continues. Other defenses may include challenging the validity of any search warrant, or whether there were any “forensic flaws” during the investigation of your case. Depending on what else you have been charged with, this could include exposing flawed procedures regarding blood, breath, and urine testing; fingerprints analysis; etc.

Lastly, one of the most common defense tactics is exposing sloppy or misleading police reports which include everything from misstatements, false statements, flawed photo line-ups and inaccurate crime scene reconstruction. It is important to hire a skilled Vehicular Aggravated Assault lawyer to defend you who has knowledge of all the possible defenses to assert in your case.

Please view our Vehicular Aggravated Assault case wins and be sure to ask other lawyers for their wins in Vehicular Aggravated Assault cases.

It is important to hire an AV® rated law firm (the highest possible rating by Martindale Hubbell®). Also David Michael Cantor is a Vehicular Aggravated Assault Lawyer in Arizona, and a Certified Criminal Law Specialist, per the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization. In addition, the Firm and all of its lawyers are listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers®. At DM Cantor, the majority of our Attorneys are ex-Prosecutors, and all of our Vehicular Aggravated Assault Lawyers in Arizona know the system well. For a free initial consultation, call us at 602-307-0808, or click here to contact us now.

Click here… if you have not been charged with Aggravated Assault yet, but the police are in the “pre-charge investigation stage” of your case.

Contact DM Cantor and speak to a Vehicular Aggravated Assault Lawyer in Arizona. We will assist you with your Aggravated Assault case.

Click to Watch Important Questions to Ask when Hiring a Lawyer

Request a Free Consultation

Fill out the form below to receive a free and confidential initial consultation.

Click here for important legal disclaimer.


10.0 Superb Rating
AVVO Criminal Defense

AV-Highest Rated Preeminent Lawyers

Nation's Top 1% Attorney
National Association of Distinguished Counsel

Super Lawyer
Criminal & DUI Defense

Top 100 Trial Lawyers
(Criminal Defense)

American Trial Lawyers Association

Client Satisfaction Award
American Institute of DUI / DWI Attorneys

Top 100 Lawyer
American Society of Legal Advocates

Top 10 DUI/DWI Law Firm
American Institute of DUI / DWI Attorneys

National College for DUI Defense

Top 10 Attorney
National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys

Charter Member
Trial Masters

DUI Defense Lawyers Association

Lifetime Charter Member
Best Attorneys of America

American Bar Foundation

Sustaining Member
Arizona Trial Lawyers Association

American Association for Justice

Life Member
Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice

Superior DUI Attorney
National Advocacy for DUI Defense

Member Since 1989
American Bar Association

Better Business Bureau
A+ Rating

Call 24/7 602-307-0808

40 N Central Ave, Ste 2300
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Click here for Directions

For Family Law questions please go to Cantor Law Group.
For Car Accident or Personal Injury Visit Cantor Injury Lawyers.
[contact-form-7 id="34943" title="Exit Intent"]