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Felonious Assault

Felonious assault is the most serious degree of assault crime that a person can be charged with in Ohio. Felonious assault is a felony offense, and certain convictions can result in mandatory prison sentences.

People are typically charged with felonious assault when they cause serious physical harm to alleged victims or use a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance in the commission of an alleged assault. Individuals accused of these types of crimes often have valid self-defense claims that can lead to the criminal charges being reduced or dismissed.

Attorney for Felonious Assault Arrests in Cincinnati, OH

If you were arrested or you believe that you could be under investigation anywhere in or around Hamilton County for an alleged felonious assault, it is in your best interest to exercise your right to remain silent until you have legal representation. Joslyn Law Firm aggressively defends clients accused of crimes of violence in numerous communities throughout southwest Ohio, including Norwood, Harrison, Springdale, Sycamore, Bridgetown, Anderson, Green, Delhi, Miamitown, and many others.

Cincinnati criminal defense lawyer Brian Joslyn can fight to help you achieve the most favorable resolution to your case that results in the fewest possible penalties. Call (513) 399-6289 right now to have our attorney provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.


Ohio Felonious Assault Information Center


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Felonious Assault Charges in Hamilton County

Ohio Revised Code § 2903.11 establishes that a person commits felonious assault if he or she does either of the following:

  • Causes serious physical harm to another person or to another person's unborn; or
  • Causes or attempts to cause physical harm to another person or to another person's unborn by means of a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance.

Felonious assault is generally a second-degree felony, but an alleged offender can be charged with a first-degree felony if the alleged victim is a peace officer or an investigator of the bureau of criminal identification and investigation. Ohio Revised Code § 2923.11(A) defines a deadly weapon as “any instrument, device, or thing capable of inflicting death, and designed or specially adapted for use as a weapon, or possessed, carried, or used as a weapon,” while Ohio Revised Code § 2923.11(K) defines a dangerous ordnance as any of the following:

  • Any automatic or sawed-off firearm, zip-gun, or ballistic knife;
  • Any explosive device or incendiary device;
  • Nitroglycerin, nitrocellulose, nitrostarch, PETN, cyclonite, TNT, picric acid, and other high explosives; amatol, tritonal, tetrytol, pentolite, pecretol, cyclotol, and other high explosive compositions; plastic explosives; dynamite, blasting gelatin, gelatin dynamite, sensitized ammonium nitrate, liquid-oxygen blasting explosives, blasting powder, and other blasting agents; and any other explosive substance having sufficient brisance or power to be particularly suitable for use as a military explosive, or for use in mining, quarrying, excavating, or demolitions;
  • Any firearm, rocket launcher, mortar, artillery piece, grenade, mine, bomb, torpedo, or similar weapon, designed and manufactured for military purposes, and the ammunition for that weapon;
  • Any firearm muffler or suppressor; or
  • Any combination of parts that is intended by the owner for use in converting any firearm or other device into a dangerous ordnance.

A dangerous ordnance, however, does not include any of the following:

  • Any firearm, including a military weapon and the ammunition for that weapon, and regardless of its actual age, that employs a percussion cap or other obsolete ignition system, or that is designed and safe for use only with black powder;
  • Any pistol, rifle, or shotgun, designed or suitable for sporting purposes, including a military weapon as issued or as modified, and the ammunition for that weapon, unless the firearm is an automatic or sawed-off firearm;
  • Any cannon or other artillery piece that, regardless of its actual age, is of a type in accepted use prior to 1887, has no mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, or other system for absorbing recoil and returning the tube into battery without displacing the carriage, and is designed and safe for use only with black powder;
  • Black powder, priming quills, and percussion caps possessed and lawfully used to fire a cannon of a type defined in division (L)(3) of this section during displays, celebrations, organized matches or shoots, and target practice, and smokeless and black powder, primers, and percussion caps possessed and lawfully used as a propellant or ignition device in small-arms or small-arms ammunition; or
  • Dangerous ordnance that is inoperable or inert and cannot readily be rendered operable or activated, and that is kept as a trophy, souvenir, curio, or museum piece.

An alleged offender can also be charged with felonious assault if, with knowledge that he or she has tested positive as a carrier of a virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), he or she does any of the following:

  • Engages in sexual conduct with another person without disclosing that knowledge to the other person prior to engaging in the sexual conduct;
  • Engages in sexual conduct with a person whom the alleged offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe lacks the mental capacity to appreciate the significance of the knowledge that the alleged offender has tested positive as a carrier of a virus that causes AIDS; or
  • Engages in sexual conduct with a person under 18 years of age who is not the spouse of the alleged offender.

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Felonious Assault Penalties in Cincinnati

Felonious assault convictions are punishable as follows, depending on the grade of the alleged offense:

  • Second-Degree Felony — Up to eight years in prison and/or fine of up to $15,000; or
  • First-Degree Felony — Up to 11 years in prison and/or fine of up to $20,000.

If the alleged victim of a felonious assault was a woman whom the alleged offender knew was pregnant at the time of the alleged offense, Ohio Revised Code § 2929.14 establishes that the court will impose a mandatory prison term that is either a definite prison term of six months or one of the following:

  • Second-Degree Felony — Two, three, four, five, six, seven, or eight years; or
  • First-Degree Felony — Three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, or 11 years.

If the alleged victim is a peace officer or an investigator of the bureau of criminal identification and investigation, and the alleged victim suffered serious physical harm as a result of the commission of the offense, the court will impose a mandatory prison term prescribed for a first-degree felony under Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(F) that cannot be reduced. If the deadly weapon used in the commission of a felonious assault is a motor vehicle, the court will impose a class two suspension of the alleged offender's driver's license, commercial driver's license, temporary instruction permit, probationary license, or nonresident operating privilege as specified in Ohio Revised Code § 4510.02(A)(2).


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Ohio Felonious Assault Resources

State v. Triplett, 192 Ohio App.3d 600, 2011-Ohio-816 — Walter Triplett was charged with involuntary manslaughter and felonious assault in a two-count indictment filed May 12, 2009, after he punched Michael Corrado once and Corrado suffered a head injury, dying later that day. Triplett claimed that he acted in defense of his twin sister. A jury found Triplett guilty of felonious assault but was unable to reach an agreement on the involuntary manslaughter charge. The Eighth District Court of Appeals reversed and remanded the judgment, noting 13 assignments of error, including Triplett having been denied due process of law in eight different instances as well as being denied his right to a speedy trial, denied a fair trial by reason of improper prosecutorial argument, and unconstitutionally subjected to multiple punishments in violation of the Ohio and Federal Constitutions.

State v. Parr, 2016-Ohio-5629 — Sabrina Parr was found guilty of two counts of felonious assault and one count of domestic violence. At the end of trial, before jury deliberations, the trial court gave the following jury instructions to the jury:

If you find that the state proved beyond a reasonable doubt all of the essential elements of the offense of felonious assault as charged in Count 1 of the indictment, and you further find that the defendant proved by a preponderance of the evidence all of the essential elements of the affirmative defense of self-defense, your verdict must be not guilty. (Tr. 867.)

And here is the lesser included offense. It’s called aggravated assault, in violation of 2903.12. If you find that the state failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt all of the essential elements of felonious assault in Count 1 then your verdict must be not guilty of that offense. In that event, or if you are unable to unanimously agree, you will continue your deliberations to decide whether the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt all the essential elements of the lesser included offense of aggravated assault. (Tr. 868.)

The Eighth District Court of Appeals concluded that the trial court incorrectly instructed the jury that if they find Parr not guilty of felonious assault, then they have to consider Parr’s guilt for aggravated assault. The Court vacated Parr’s conviction and remanded the case to the lower court for a new trial.


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Joslyn Law Firm | Cincinnati Felonious Assault Defense Lawyer

Do you think that you might be under investigation or were you already arrested for an alleged felonious assault anywhere in southwest Ohio? Do not say anything to authorities without legal counsel. Contact Joslyn Law Firm as soon as possible.

Brian Joslyn is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Cincinnati who represents individuals in Springfield, Montgomery, Colerain, Reading, Forest Park, Symmes, Blue Ash, Miami, and many surrounding areas of Hamilton County. You can have our lawyer review your case and help you understand all of your legal options when you call (513) 399-6289 or complete an online contact form to take advantage of a free initial consultation.


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