Dealing With Mayhem Charges

Aggravated mayhem

Aggravated mayhem explained

The crime of mayhem, when charged against a person, will require that person to appear in a court of law and face litigation. Although the crime of mayhem may not itself be as ominous and dangerous as it sounds, the punishment from the court certainly can be, especially of you do not have a capable attorney to back you up. The crime of mayhem certainly involves the victim being seriously injured. If a person was to attack another person with an intention to maim or permanently disable the other person and succeed in doing so, then he will be guilty of mayhem crime. If the crime of mayhem is found to be quite severe, then it might be classified as aggravated mayhem.

Seriousness of injury

The courts will count only serious injuries if a crime has to be classified as mayhem. Only injuries that result in the victim getting permanently disabled are considered. If the injury sustained by the victim is permanent, then the person responsible for the crime can be tried in a court of law for crime of mayhem.

Serious injuries do happen when two persons attack each other, but the mere fact that a serious injury happened, is not enough for a person to be tried for the crime of mayhem. As in the case of other laws and rules, the definitions of the crime of mayhem will also differ from one state to another. However, these differences are only slight, and the main defining points are the same in most states. If a person was to negligently or recklessly injure another person and if the injury suffered was to be serious, then the person who committed the crime can be tried in a court of law for the crime of mayhem.

guilty of mayhem crime

       aggravated mayhem charges

Extreme cases

If the defendant was to disfigure the victim then such cases are considered as extreme cases of mayhem, and may even be classified as aggravated mayhem. Such injuries may even lead to the death of the victim in some cases. In such cases where the victim was to die of the injuries suffered, the defendant can be charged with murder even if he or she did not intend to murder the victim.

These are some details concerning the crime of mayhem. It is a serious crime and the punishments that are handed out in such cases reflect the seriousness with which the courts consider such cases.

Aggravating Factors That Make Battery A Felony

Aggravated mayhem

               Punishments for aggravated mayhem

Domestic battery is defined as the non-consensual touching of another individual, be it a spouse, partner or another person living within the same household, and which does not cause any serious injury. Domestic battery as defined above is generally only a misdemeanor. The crime becomes aggravated battery if it results in serious injury. Aggravated battery is punishable up to four years in state prison. Given below are certain aggravating factors that make a battery a felony.

Sexual battery

Sexual battery is the non-consensual touching the intimate parts of a body for sexual arousal. This is considered as a misdemeanor. However, if the victim is a minor with a previous history of convictions, then in such cases, sexual battery becomes a felony. If it is committed against the employee of the batterer, then it will be considered as an aggravating factor.


Hazing can be defined as any initiation or pre-initiation process by a student body or organization, irrespective of whether it has been recognized by an educational institution or not. In many states, hazing can be charged as a felony if it results in serious bodily injury. It can be awarded up to one year in prison and up to $5000 fine.

Discharge of a firearm or laser

Discharging a firearm with malicious or willful intent in a dwelling, building, motor vehicle or aircraft can be considered as a felony. By ‘inhabited,’ we mean that the structure is one that is currently under use irrespective of whether it is in fact occupied at the time of discharge or not. It can also be if a firearm or laser is shot at an aircraft, again regardless of whether it s occupied in flight or not. Such a felony is punishable up to seven years jail time in state prison.


Domestic battery

                      Aggravated mayhem explained

An action can be termed as mayhem if it deprives an individual of any body part. Mayhem can include, but not restricted to slitting or injuring a nose, ear or lip. Generally, mayhem is misdemeanor, but aggravated mayhem that is a crime, which is committed intentionally and recklessly, with extreme indifference is considered as a felony. Punishments awarded for aggravated mayhem may be lifetime in prison with only a possibility of parole.

That was some information on the various aggravating factors that makes battery a felony. For more info on the same, refer online legal resources or visit your local library.

Laws Of Mayhem

Aggravated mayhem

                Laws regarding aggravated mayhem

The Singleton case brings up a chill up my spine every time it is mentioned. It is one of the most popular cases, mainly due to the high-profile killer whose brutality is directly out of one’s worst nightmare.

In 1979, Lawrence Singleton was convicted on charges of aggravated mayhem and attempted murder. The case was that Singleton had raped and chopped off the arms of a 15-year old girl in California. Good luck found the girl though as she was able to bring herself to a hospital in time before the injuries took a toll on her. The police arrested Singleton soon after that and the court sentenced him to 14 years in prison and was slapped a $2.5million fine in damages to the girl.

This was hoped to be the last case in which anybody heard of such brutality but unfortunately, it did not stop there. Singleton murdered another girl soon after his jail term and was then convicted of murder and sentenced to death.

One wonders that if the justice system was quick to note that the aggravated mayhem that Singleton was charged with had carried harsher sentencing, would it not have prevented the murder? After all, the man did chop off the forearms of a minor and with it, robbed her of much of life’s joy. When considering that, the $2.5million fine seems to be peanuts. In fact, if the laws were tough on criminals, it would certainly have prevented many more such cases; after all, Singleton was not the only case of absolute brutality.

Singleton case

   Mayhem laws are dealt by courts

Therein lies the greatest irony of law; it should be fair to everyone even though it at times cannot. The courts can only work conforming to the contours of the laws set in place by our legislators. These laws have been prepared not just keeping a singular case in mind or a single aspect. Suppose there was an instance where a victim of battery tries to defend him or herself with a knife and cuts the ears off her assailant, it would also have to be tried under these laws. Adequate safeguards have to be put in place to ensure that the innocent is not punished without letting the guilty take advantage of the laws’ loopholes.

And that is how law is. It is never perfect but that is what lawyers make use of. As civilized persons, we have to interpret laws and improve them clause by clause.

How To Fight Charges Of Aggravated Mayhem

Aggravated mayhem

 Litigation in aggravated mayhem cases

Aggravated mayhem, in the United States, falls under the criminal code for aggravated assault, and is seen as a highly brutal offense as it renders the victim incapable of the complete use of his body. Sometimes the accused may even face imprisonment if he is found guilty by the court.

What is mayhem?

Mayhem is by definition a willful act, and involves essentially the cut off or disabling any limb of another person. The amount of violence that went into committing the act of mayhem often determines the punishment incurred if found guilty. This also takes into account the manner in which the plaintiff was attacked. The seriousness of the crime increases proportionally to the violence the plaintiff was subjected to.

What to do if you are accused

If you are accused of an act of mayhem, the first thing to do, as always, is to get yourself a good lawyer, especially vital in this case due to how high the punishment may go. If you appear before a jury and are unable to convince them of your innocence, or if your lawyer is, prospects are bleak. Other criminal offence accusations may leave you room to maneuver within error, but when the charges involve mayhem, go for the best you can afford and solicit.

The Penal code section 206 contains essentially this definition for torture: the infliction of great bodily injury upon someone, with the view to causing cruel and extreme pain and suffering. The reason for such an act may lie among revenge, extortion, persuasion, or any sadistic purpose. The stipulated punishment is life imprisonment.

The Penal code section 205 identifies aggravated mayhem as the unlawful and circumstantial manifestation of apathy or indifference towards the physical and mental wellbeing of another person. To be found guilty, the accused must have disabled the victim permanently, or dismembered him. The crime is recognized as a felony that can elicit punishment of upto life imprisonment in the state prison, with parole a possibility.

What is mayhem

                   Best aggravated mayhem lawyers

If you or a loved one is accused of either of the above crimes, it is imperative that you seek out and solicit the services of a respectable and able attorney to represent you in the courtroom. For more information regarding what to do when charged with aggravated-mayhem, and how to procure services from a good lawyer, refer online legal resources.

A Case Of Mayhem

Aggravated Mayhem

        Aggravated Mayhem and Mayhem

Holly was walking along Northern Avenue when suddenly a masked man came at her out of nowhere and slashed at her face. The attack was so violent that Holly suffered multiple injuries to her face including a split lip, near loss of vision in her left eye and slit off her ear. For all practical purposes she was almost unrecognizable. All that the thief gained were a few dollars and a credit card.

She had to undergo surgery to restore her facial muscles. After spending a lot of money and effort on the part of her doctors, not to mention the pain she had to suffer, most of her face was restored in twelve weeks.

There was outrage in her neighborhood and the police were under pressure to book the culprit quickly. Fortunately, they didn’t have to wait for too long as the unsuspecting thief used Holly’s credit card at a fuel station and was soon arrested. They booked him under aggravated mayhem laws of the state.

Everyone deserves a fair trial and in this case, the accused got one too. The facts of the case were put before the criminal court and the judge soon gave his verdict. The thief was fined enough to compensate the medical bills that Holly had to suffer and also for other losses. But the judge did not convict him with aggravated mayhem.

Different forms of Mayhem

Why did the judge not convict the accused with this higher degree of mayhem? For this, you will need to understand the difference between the two acts as per California law, which is where the crime had taken place.

Causing physical injury which results in the loss of certain parts of the body such as the lip, eye, ear or others may be viewed as “mayhem”. The defense tried to argue that since Holly’s face was medically corrected, the accused should not be convicted with this charge. Unfortunately for him, the judge dismissed this argument stating that the law clearly details that such an argument does not mitigate the charge of mayhem.

Loss of limb

             Differences between two forms of mayhem

When it came to aggravated mayhem, the defense argued that the accused had no intention to cause permanent loss of limb or other organs. The prosecution found it difficult to prove otherwise and the judge allowed the argument and convicted the accused with only mayhem.

This case shows the importance of knowing the difference of two very closely related terms with respect to law. Moreover, it shows that a lawyer should take advantage of these differences for the benefit of his client.

Mayhem Crimes: Punishments And Penalties

Aggravated mayhem

                 Aggravated mayhem punishments

Mayhem can be described as a violent act by a person, resulting in the loss of a body member of another person. Unlawful and malicious attacks by a person on another, which leaves the other person disabled or disfigured, are also considered as a case of mayhem. There are serious laws in place to fight such crimes, and the punishments for these crimes can range from mild to severe, depending upon the circumstances they’re committed under.

Aggravated mayhem, on the other hand, refers to the extreme or reckless disregard for the physical or psychological well-being of another person. It is considered as a case of aggravated mayhem if a person holds down another while causing disfigurement of a body part, or if he or she taunts the victim after injuring him or her.

Convicted for mayhem charges

Once convicted of mayhem the defendant can then face a formal probation, a maximum fine of $10,000 or a prison sentence of two, four or eight years in the California State Prison.

Enhancements to the sentences

Additional sentences can be given to the defendant if the court deems so. There are two sentence enhancements that the California judge can impose on the defendants. The judge can impose either or both of them according to the hearing. The first sentence enhancement is related to the victim of the mayhem. If the victim satisfies any of the following criteria, then the judge has the power to impose sentence enhancements. The criteria are given below:

  • Victim is under 14 years of age
  • Victim is 65 years of older
  • Victim is blind, deaf, or developmentally disabled
  • Victim is a paraplegic or quadriplegic.

The second sentence enhancement is related to the extent of the injury suffered by the victim. If the victim was subjected to immense bodily harm by the defendant then the judge can sentence the defendant to a three to six year sentence enhancement. If the defendant was to be convicted of torture, then the penalty is life imprisonment in the California State prison.

Death to the victim

California felony murder

                       Aggravated mayhem penalties

Mayhem can often result in the death of the victim, which might be purely accidental. However, if there is enough evidence to suggest that the violent act by a person lead to the death, then the California felony murder rule makes the defendant liable to charges of murder in the first degree.

These are some important points regarding the various punishments given to those criminals who perpetrate violent acts of mayhem. Further information on this can be availed at online legal resources.

How Does A Prosecutor Prove That The Defendant Is Guilty Of Mayhem?

Aggravated mayhem, Prosecutor

Laws for mayhem

Mayhem is a very serious crime that could result in severe punishments. According to Penal Code 203 PC, a person is said to be guilty of mayhem if he maliciously deprives individuals of body part or disfigures, disables or renders it useless.

In order to convict a person charged with aggravated mayhem, the prosecutor should be able to prove three facts or what is known as three ‘elements’ of the crime-

  • That he used physical force unlawfully
  • That it caused any of the above injuries
  • That the force was inflicted maliciously

To understand this better, here is a closer look at some terms used while dealing with mayhem-


Every ‘disability’ does not always equate to mayhem. In order for someone to be charged of mayhem for ‘disabling’ some part of a person’s body, the person should do something more than disable a body part temporarily. For instance, if a person breaks the ankle of another and since the ankle takes a considerable amount of time to heal, then it can be considered as disability.


If the injury is permanent, then it can be considered as a case of disfigurement. However a permanent injury is subject to whether or not the doctors can improve or repair the injury. A cut lip that requires stitches does not qualify as permanent injury as it would ultimately heal on its own without serious scarring. However if a part of the lip is bitten off, then the defendant will not be relieved of mayhem charges despite the fact that surgeons could possibly reattach the lip. Forced tattoos, burned scars, permanent blindness etc are all examples of permanent disfigurement.

Aggravated mayhem, Prosecutor

Prove defendant guilty of mayhem

What is a malicious act?

Now you may wonder what a malicious act is. This is very important as in law every act needs to be appraised. If an individual acts unlawfully with total disregard to the physical and mental implications it may have on the victim and with the intent to injure the person, then it can be termed as a malicious act.

These are the facts that a prosecutor should prove in order to convict a defendant of aggravated mayhem and some of the terms related to this crime. As should be obvious by now, the advocate who is prosecuting or defending should be well aware of the many nuances of law that deals with mayhem. This calls for a lot of experience in the field of criminal law.


Aggravated Assault Laws In Texas

Aggravated mayhem

Aggravated assault Laws

A prosecutor in Texas can charge an individual with misdemeanor or felony, depending on the seriousness of the crime committed. What makes an aggravated assault different from a simple assault, is that it involves causing bodily harm to, or physically attacking, the victim. For an assault to be considered as an aggravated mayhem, the victim should be deprived of any body part, or have one rendered useless by the assault.

Aggravated assault:

In Texas, aggravated assault is said to take place when an individual either commits severe injury to another person, or when they threaten an assault using a deadly weapon. Thus, it is different from aggravated mayhem, because a person does not have to actually harm another to be charged of second degree aggravated assault. So, by this definition, under Texas law you can be charged for aggravated assault, if you cause serious bodily harm to another person, or even if you simply threaten them at gun point and assault them physically.


The penalty for a second degree felony of aggravated assault varies from case to case. Sentences may be from 2 up to 20 years. The defendant can also be asked to pay up to $10,000 as fine. Depending on each case, the penalty may either be a fine alone or it can be charged in addition to the prison sentence.

First degree vs. Second degree:

Whether or not, an aggravated assault charge can be considered to be a first degree felony will depend on the role of the plaintiff. First degree aggravated assault is charged if the crime is committed during a domestic violence dispute and more intense charges if the victim is a witness to the crime, an informant, a public official or a security guard. If found guilty of first degree aggravated assault, the defendant can face a five year sentence.


Affirmative defense

Second degree felony aggravated assault

A defendant can plead guilty, not guilty, or no contest when charged with second degree felony aggravated assault. However the state has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the crime. The state permits you to use affirmative defenses if you did commit the crime. If you assaulted the victim as self defense, or in order to prevent them from stealing your property, then you can use an affirmative defense. You will be required to admit to committing the crime while availing an affirmative defense.

These are some aspects of the laws against aggravated assault in Texas. Go through advanced legal resources to know more about this topic.

Some Details On Mayhem Law

Aggravated mayhem

            Aggravated mayhem laws in California

If a person attacks another person, causing permanent disability or disfigurement, then that act is termed as aggravated mayhem. When the act is carried out by the person, it is deemed to have been done with the intent of causing bodily harm to the victim. In some cases, this may also include reckless or extreme disregard for the physical or psychological well-being of the victim. The defendant will have to face these types of charges, if he/she was involved in holding the victim down while injuring him, or taunting the victim after causing bodily injuries. If the victim was to die following the acts of violence from the part of the defendant, the defendant may have to face felony murder charges, even if they harbored no clear intent to kill the victim.

Different aspects of mayhem laws

The act of mayhem mainly corresponds to a person intentionally disabling a body part of the victim, which is capable of defending the victim against any such violence. Consider a person unlawfully and violently cutting or disabling a person’s hand or finger, striking out the person’s eye or foretooth, or disabling any other body parts that result in taking away that person’s courage; these are all acts that are legally classified under mayhem. However, cutting off a nose or ear are not considered as mayhem, under most legal systems.

If the case under consideration has to be treated as aggravated mayhem, then it has to involve the disfigurement or loss of a limb, organ or some part of the body. In California, those found guilty of this offence are liable to face life imprisonment in the State Prison, with a possibility of parole.

Prosecuting for murder

Psychological well-being

                Aggravated mayhem explained

If the charge filed for is mayhem, the victim does not need to prove that the defendant intended to kill him. There are some cases where mayhem results in the death of the victim, and in these cases, the defendant can be prosecuted for first degree murder. If proven guilty of these charges, he/she will have to face either of the following punishments: death penalty, life imprisonment without parole or up to 25 years in prison.

Mayhem is a charge that can either result in heavy punishment for the defendant including a few years in the prison with a chance for parole.

Various Aspects About Mayhem

Aggravated mayhem

Inflicting physical injury

According to Penal Code § 203, mayhem is defined as an unlawful and malicious action that deprives an individual of a body part, or disfigures or disables it or renders it useless. Actions that can be described as mayhem include slitting the nose, ear or lip, cutting or disabling the tongue or putting out an eye. In short, it is inflicting any form of serious physical injury knowing that it will harm the person and with the intention to do it.


A person can be accused for aggravated mayhem when he/she causes some form of permanent disability or disfigurement or deprives him/her of a limb or an organ or any body part of a person intentionally with clear indifference to the physical as well as the psychological effects that it may have on that person.  Intent to kill does not have to be proved in this case. The punishment for this offense can be life imprisonment in the state prison with a possibility of parole.

Defenses for mayhem:

The defenses for mayhem are very similar to that of battery. Self defense or defending another are two excellent defenses for beating charges for mayhem. In such instances, the injuries inflicted on the attacker are justified and reasonable. For instance if a person is being held at gun point and that person for reasons of self defense, grabs a glass bottle and uses it to harm his/her attacker in order to escape, then the injuries inflicted in such a circumstance will not be considered as mayhem.

Accident is another less commonly seen defense. This inspects the mental state or intent while inflicting the injuries to check if the intent was malicious.

Punishments for mayhem:

Physical injury

Punishments for mayhem

If convicted of mayhem, the minimum punishment awarded is two years in state prison and a maximum of up to eight years. In the case of aggravated mayhem, the punishment awarded may even be a life sentence. In criminal offenses such as these, it is common for certain enhancements of one to eight years to apply in sentencing. An additional three to six years in person may be given if there is ‘great bodily harm.’

These are some aspects of mayhem, the defense mechanisms against it and the punishments awarded for such criminal offenses. Get the opinion of an experienced attorney while fighting cases of such misdemeanor.

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