New York Penal Law § 120.04-A - Aggravated Vehicular Assault
Aggravated Vehicular Assault is a New York vehicle offense prosecutors charge in certain situations when someone engages in reckless driving and commits Vehicular Assault in the Second Degree under N.Y. Penal Law § 120.03. Aggravated Vehicular Assault is a Class C felony.The Elements of Aggravated Vehicular Assault
Before a judge or jury can convict anyone of Aggravated Vehicular Assault, the government must prove each element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. The elements of Aggravated Vehicular Assault are:
- The defendant engaged in reckless driving;
- One of the following applies; and
- The defendant’s blood-alcohol content was .18 or more;
- The defendant’s driver’s license was suspended or revoked for a prior DUI offense or refusal;
- The defendant has a prior DUI within the past 10 years;
- More than one person was seriously injured as a result of the defendant’s actions;
- The defendant has a prior manslaughter or homicide conviction involving the use of a motor vehicle;
- The defendant was transporting a passenger 15 or younger, who was injured as a result of the defendant’s actions;
- The defendant’s intoxication resulted in serious injury to another person.
However, the elements of Aggravated Vehicular Assault can be more easily framed as:
- The defendant drove recklessly;
- The defendant committed Vehicular Assault in the Second Degree; and
- As a result of the defendant’s intoxication, another person suffered serious physical injury.
Aggravated Vehicular Assault is a fairly specific crime, and many of its subsections require a prior conviction. However, some of the most common examples of Aggravated Vehicular Assault include the following:
- A reckless driver who was impaired by alcohol and has a prior DUI causes an accident resulting in serious injury to a passenger;
- A driver transporting a minor was intoxicated and drove recklessly, causing an accident that resulted in serious injury to the minor;
- A driver with a prior vehicular manslaughter conviction engages in reckless driving while drunk and causes an accident resulting in another’s serious physical injury.
Often, prosecutors bring Aggravated Vehicular Assault charges along with one or more of the following:
- Vehicular Assault in the First Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 120.04
- Vehicular Assault in the Second Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 120.03
- Aggravated Vehicular Assault – N.Y. Penal Law § 120.04-a
- Driving While Ability Impaired By Alcohol – N.Y. Vehicle & Traffic Law § 1192(1)
- Driving While Intoxicated Per Se – N.Y. Vehicle & Traffic Law § 1192(2)
- Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated Per Se – N.Y. Vehicle & Traffic Law § 1192(2-a)
- Driving While Intoxicated – N.Y. Vehicle & Traffic Law § 1192(3)
- Driving While Ability Impaired By Drugs – N.Y. Vehicle & Traffic Law § 1192(4)
There are several defenses to Aggravated Vehicular Assault that can either reduce your sentencing exposure or result in the prosecution withdrawing the case against you or the jury returning a “not guilty” verdict. The most common defenses include the following:
- You were not intoxicated;
- You were not driving recklessly;
- The alleged victim did not suffer serious physical injury;
- You were not operating the vehicle;
- Officers violated your rights when investigating the accident; and
- There was a problem with how the blood or breath sample was obtained or stored.
Aggravated Vehicular Assault is a Class C felony. In New York, Class C felony offenses carry a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in jail and a fine of up to $15,000.Speak with an Experienced New York Vehicle Crimes Lawyer About Your Case Today
If you’ve recently been arrested and charged with a New York vehicle crime, it is imperative that you work with an experienced criminal defense attorney who has specific experience handling these complex and high-stakes cases. At Tilem & Associates, P.C., our knowledgeable team of New York vehicle crimes lawyers have decades of experience aggressively defending the rights of clients charged with Aggravated Vehicular Assault, Vehicular Manslaughter, and other serious vehicle crimes. We are immediately available to meet with you to get started working on a compelling defense to the charges you face. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation today, call 877-377-8666. You can also reach us through our online contact form.