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What Does Indiana Law Consider a Deadly Weapon?

Assault and battery charges are never something to take lightly, but it is especially true when a “deadly weapon” is involved. The alleged crime can go from a misdemeanor to a felony if one of these weapons is used. Because the consequences of such a conviction are so much greater, it is crucial to understand what constitutes a deadly weapon under Indiana law.

Defining “Deadly Weapon” In Indiana

Indiana Code 35-31.5-2-86 lists four categories of weapons the state considers deadly, including:

  • Firearms (regardless of whether it is loaded or unloaded)
  • An animal capable of causing significant bodily harm
  • A biological disease, virus, or organism
  • Other destructive devices and weapons

While the last category lists a few examples in its definition (such as electronic stun weapons and chemical substances), it is purposefully vague in order to include a wide variety of potential weapons. Knives and blunt objects (i.e., baseball bats) also fall under this umbrella if they are capable of causing serious bodily harm.

Which Charges Could Be Enhanced?

Criminal violations become much more serious when a deadly weapon is used, often going from minor misdemeanors to felonies carrying significant fines and jail time. Some of the charges most commonly enhanced by the use of deadly weapons are:

Robbery is the theft of property using force or the threat of force. If a deadly weapon is used, the offense bumps from a Level 5 felony to a Level 3 felony in Indiana.

Serious crimes such as rape, child molestation, and sexual battery can all be enhanced even further with the presence of a deadly weapon.

Battery is a Class A misdemeanor charged when a person knowingly touches or places bodily fluids on another person in a rude or angry manner. It’s considered
Domestic Battery if committed against a family member and Aggravated Battery (a Level 3 felony) if an injury or risk of death occurs.

How to Proceed

If you have been charged with a crime that was allegedly committed with a deadly weapon, do not hesitate to contact Razumich & Associates, an Indiana law firm experienced in this type of case. Contact us online or by calling 317-449-8661.

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