Across America, assault is considered either a misdemeanor or a felony. These charges are serious and fall under a wide range of actions, resulting in harsh charges and consequences. In Oregon, there are four different levels of assault. Below we will discuss the four classifications of assault crimes.
First, it’s important to note that in fiscal year 2017, “the courts reported 66,783 felony and Class A misdemeanor cases to the commission. This represents a decrease of 869 cases from the prior fiscal year.” Though the number has decreased, there are still a plethora of these charges brought against people every day. Stay in the know of what is considered assault and the different levels of severity.
Assault in the Fourth Degree
Typically considered a Class A misdemeanor in Oregon, assault in the fourth degree falls underneath two categories. Either the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly did something that resulted in physical harm to another, or the offender acted with criminal negligence by means of a dangerous weapon which resulted in physical harm.
If you have past charges you may receive a felony charge instead of a misdemeanor for this crime, so stay cautious, and don’t add to the statistic of annual felony charges.
Assault in the Third Degree
There are many different actions that fall under third degree assault. These crimes are always considered Class C felonies, unless the offender was intoxicated and operating a vehicle, in which case it is considered a Class B. You’ll find the actions listed below from ORS 163.165 directly:
- Recklessly cause serious physical injury to another person with a dangerous or deadly weapon.
- Recklessly cause serious physical injury to another person under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life.
- Recklessly cause physical injury to another person with a dangerous or deadly weapon person under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life.
- You cause physical injury to another person while you are aided by somebody else actually present.
- You are at least 18 or older and you intentionally or knowingly cause injury to a child aged 10 years old or younger.
Assault in the Second Degree
Often classified as a Measure 11 offense, an assault in the second degree is very serious. If you’re convicted of such you can expect to spend 70 months in prison. From ORS 163.175 verbatim, you can be charged with second degree assault if you:
- Intentionally or knowingly cause serious physical injury to another.
- Intentionally or knowingly cause physical injury to another with the use of a deadly or dangerous weapon.
- Recklessly cause serious physical injury to another through the use of a deadly or dangerous weapon under the circumstances manifesting an extreme indifference to the value of human life.
For these actions, any injury caused with a weapon can bring a Measure 11 charge down with you.
Assault in the First Degree
Finally, the most serious assault charge is that of assault in the first degree. It is a Measure 11 crime without fail and will result in at least 90 months in prison without reduction. For the crime to be in the first degree it must result in a “serious physical injury.” These actions detailed in ORS 163.185 are as follows:
- Intentionally cause serious physical injury to another person by the use of a deadly or dangerous weapon (e.g. shooting someone with a gun).
- Intentionally or knowingly cause serious physical injury to a child aged 6 or younger.
- Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly cause serious physical injury to another, and you are driving under the influence, and you have at least 3 prior DUII convictions.
If you have been charged with any of these crimes, contact a criminal defense attorney in Clackamas County. A good lawyer can help you reduce these charges or at least lessen the consequences. You can find more about the different consequences of felonies, here.