Assault by Strangulation

Assault by Strangulation

Strangulation is one of the most common crimes in Texas and is usually a misdemeanor offense. It can escalate, however, to a second-degree felony. As a felony offense, a conviction for strangulation carries not only the possibility of imprisonment and steep fines, but also severe collateral consequences.

Being charged with a crime`   v can be a frustrating experience. When faced with the possibility of serving years in prison, arming yourself with a skilled defense attorney may be the most important decision of your life. Allow The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski to provide you with the necessary resources and knowledge to fight your domestic violence charges.

Austin Assault by Strangulation Attorney, TX | Bellville

Strangulation charges can be overwhelming and complex.  The penalties that accompany domestic violence accusations can affect your professional and personal life. If you have been arrested for strangulation, contact The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski. Jackson F. Gorski at The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski has handled hundreds of domestic violence cases in the Central Texas area. He is passionate about criminal defense and protecting his clients’ rights.

The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski accepts clients in Williamson County, TX, and surrounding areas including Austin, Cedar Park, Florence, Granger, Jarrell, Leander, Round Rock, Thrall, Weir, and Coupland. Call 512-960-4646 to secure a confidential consultation today.

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Information Center

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Strangulation in Texas

Strangulation is a unique Texas offense. For starters, strangulation is an enhancement to assault. An enhancement is a criminal statute that gives the judge the discretion to lengthen an individual’s jail or prison time. Strangulation is a criminal offense, but Texas does not consider it a specific offense in and of itself. Rather, the individual must first commit assault, and then the police can add on the strangulation enhancement if it applies. Therefore, the individual must first understand how the Texas Penal Code defines assault before understanding how it defines strangulation, which the penal system also calls “assault by strangulation.”

Under Texas §22.01, assault is:

  • Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing bodily injury to another person
  • Intentionally or knowingly threatening another person with immediate bodily injury
  • Intentionally or knowingly causing physical contact when the individual knows or should reasonably believe the other person will take it offensively or provocatively

How does strangulation come into the picture? According to §22.01(b)(2)(B), strangulation occurs when the individual intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly disrupts a person’s normal breathing or blood circulation by applying pressure to that person’s throat or covering that person’s nose or mouth. Please note that strangulation is an aggravated offense when the individual commits it against a current or former spouse, intimate partner, or household member.

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Penalties for Strangulation in TX

Assault is a Class A misdemeanor. However, assault by strangulation is a 3rd-degree Class A felony. If this is the individual’s first offense, they face a minimum of two years in jail. However, a judge has the discretion to sentence the individual to up to ten years in prison. Also, a judge may order the individual to pay a fine of up to $10,000. If this offense is not the individual’s first of its kind, it becomes a 2nd-degree felony. As a 2nd-degree felony, a judge may sentence the individual up to twenty years and order them to pay up to $10,000 in fines.

Furthermore, Texas law stipulates that a judge can order the individual to pay $100 to a family violence shelter on the alleged victim’s behalf.

But incarceration and fines are not the individual’s only concerns. If a jury convicts the individual of this offense, the individual is at risk of facing severe punishments. These punishments include, but are not limited to:

  • Employment termination
  • Loss of child custody
  • Reduced child custody
  • Loss of gun ownership rights
  • Loss of voting rights
  • Inability to enroll in a particular career or educational program

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Defenses for Strangulation in TX

There are defenses available to all crimes. Thus, the individual has viable defenses against a strangulation charge. If police arrest and charge the individual with assault by strangulation in Texas, the individual may raise the defenses below. However, bear in mind that each case is unique. Therefore, some of these defenses may not apply to the particular facts of the individual’s case. It is in the individual’s best interest to consult with a skilled strangulation defense attorney. Most likely, the individual’s attorney will discuss these defenses:

  • Not acting intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly (e.g., the individual acted accidentally)
  • Duress (e.g., someone forced the individual to commit this offense)
  • Consensual (e.g., the individual and their partner include strangulation as part of sexual activities)

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Additional Resources

Domestic Violence High-Risk Teams – The Texas Council On Family Violence’s website provides meaningful strategies for domestic-violence reduction, tips and signs of high-risk domestic violence relationships, and assault crimes in relationship statistics.

Anger Management Therapy – The Texas Online Counseling PLLC’s website is a tool individuals may use for online counseling on managing their anger. It is convenient due to its online accessibility and availability because we understand that going in person may create stigma, shame, and be troublesome.

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Georgetown Assault by Strangulation Lawyer, TX | Williamson County

If you have been accused of strangulation, you can face possible jail time and steep fines. In a stressful situation like this, let a seasoned domestic violence attorney assist you with your case. Jackson Gorski is a practiced criminal defense attorney in the larger Austin, TX area. He has been managing domestic violence offenses in Texas criminal courts for years.

The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski serves clients in the greater Travis County area and surrounding cities including West Lake Hills, Rollingwood, San Marcos, Austin, Lago Vista, Georgetown, and Sunset Valley. Contact a lawyer that puts you first.  Call 512-960-4646 to secure a free, confidential consultation with The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski today.

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