Assault against a disabled person

North Carolina takes assault and battery seriously. This is especially true if the victim is a disabled person. The penalties are even harsher in such a situation.

What is assault and battery?

Assault and battery is a type of crime that involves the assault of another person. When the victim is a disabled person, the charges are often elevated to aggravated assault, which carries much harsher penalties. Disabled individuals are a protected group of people. If a person knows that the victim is disabled but still carries out the crime, the court views the offense very seriously.

When is a person considered to be disabled?

A person is considered disabled when they have a physical or mental impairment or illness that significantly impairs their ability to defend themselves against a perpetrator. Disabilities can include blindness, deafness, mental illness, mental impairment, limited use of limbs such as a person in a wheelchair and more.

Charges for assault and battery against a disabled person

People can be arrested and charged with assault and battery against a disabled person if they deliberately committed the offense while knowing the victim had a disability. The crime is classified as a Class F felony. A person can face charges if any of the following applies:

  • A deadly weapon was used in the commission of the crime
  • The defendant intended to inflict serious bodily injury against the victim
  • The defendant caused serious harm or bodily injury to the victim
  • The defendant intended to kill the victim
  • The defendant knew that the victim had a disability

A person convicted of this crime can face 62 months in prison.

If the offense is a simple assault or battery against a disabled person, it’s classified as a Class A1 misdemeanor. A conviction could result in 150 days in jail.