Vehicular Assault

Vehicular Assault is one of several New York State Penal Law felonies which were enacted in 1983. These felonies involve drivers who are either intoxicated or impaired by drugs who cause serious physical injuries to others in automobile accidents. If an operator of a motor vehicle causes serious physical injuries to others, the crime charged is Vehicular Assault, and if the operator of the motor vehicle causes the death of another person or person, he or she is charged with Vehicular Manslaughter.

If you or a loved one is charged with Vehicular Assault or Vehicular Manslaughter, you need an attorney with the knowledge, background and experience to provide the necessary defense to fight these serious charges. When charged with a vehicular crime, contact the Law Office of Mark A. Siesel online by using our online form or contact us toll free at 888-761-7633.

For you to be charged with a Vehicular Assault or other vehicular crime such as Manslaughter, the victim must have suffered “serious physical injury.” The New York State Penal Law defines “serious physical injury” as:

“Physical injury which creates a substantial risk of death, or which causes death or serious and protracted disfigurement, protracted loss or impairment of the function of any body organ”

Frequently, the District Attorney’s office will “overcharge” these cases, meaning that you may have been charged with a Vehicular Assault in a case in which the victim’s injuries do not meet the legal standard required under the Penal Law. For example, broken bones, lacerations, and other non life threatening injuries do not meet the Penal law standard. Thus, in many cases we are able to get those charges reduced when the serious physical injury standard is not met.

Second Degree Vehicular Assault is a Class E Felony, and involves cases in which a driver has caused serious physical injury, and: 1) drove while intoxicated or the influence of drugs or a combination of the two; 2) operated a vehicle containing flammable, radioactive or explosive materials which weighed more than 18,000 pounds; 3) or operated an ATV or snowmobile while intoxicated.

First Degree Vehicular Assault is a Class D Felony, and a person has committed the crime of Vehicular Assault in the First Degree when they commit the crime of Vehicular Assault in the 2nd Degree and:

  • Commits the crime with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.18 or greater;
  • Commits the crime knowing that his or her license is suspended or revoked in New York or another state;
  • Has previously been convicted of a drunk driving offense within the last 10 years;
  • Causes serious physical injury to more than 1 other person; or
  • Has a previous conviction under this section in New York or another state.

The crime of Aggravated Vehicular Assault was enacted by the New York State Legislature effective November 1, 2007, and is a Class C Felony. An operator has committed Aggravated Vehicular Assault when they drive recklessly under the Vehicle and Traffic Law, commit the crime of Vehicular Assault in the Second Degree, and:

  • Commits the crime with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.18 or greater;
  • Commits the crime knowing that his or her license is suspended or revoked in New York or another state;
  • Has previously been convicted of a drunk driving offense within the last 10 years;
  • Causes serious physical injury to more than 1 other person; or
  • Has a previous conviction under this section in New York or another state.

When you or a loved one has been charged with a serious criminal offense such as Vehicular Assault, contact the Law Office Of Mark A. Siesel with our online form or toll free at 888-761-7633 for experienced, knowledgeable and dedicated legal representation.