Aggravated – a more serious crime due to violence, presence of a deadly weapon, or intent to commit another crime

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adj. (17c)

1. Increased; heightened; more severe; worsened. A criminal act accompanied by violence or a substantial degree of force is an aggravated crime.  Aggravated crimes include aggravated assault, aggravated battery, and aggravated robbery. [1]

1. (Of a crime) made worse or more serious by circumstances such as violence, the presence of a deadly weapon, or the intent to commit another crime <aggravated robbery>.  Cf. SIMPLE (1).

2. (Of a tort) made worse or more serious by circumstances such as intention to cause harm or reckless disregard for another’s safety <the defendant’s negligence was aggravated by malice>.

3. (Of an injury) harmful to a part of the body previously injured or debilitated <an aggravated bone fracture>.  See AGGRAVATION RULE. [3]

Types of Crimes that May Be Classified as Aggravated:

aggravated battery See BATTERY (1).

aggravated kidnapping See KIDNAPPING.

aggravated misdemeanor See serious misdemeanor under MISDEMEANOR.

aggravated robbery See ROBBERY.

aggravated sodomy See SODOMY.

aggravating circumstance See CIRCUMSTANCE.

aggravating element See aggravating circumstance under CIRCUMSTANCE.

aggravating factor See aggravating circumstance under CIRCUMSTANCE.

aggravation (17c) 1. That which enhances the gravity of a criminal or tortious act; allegations in a declaration or complaint which tend to enhance damages.  An enhancement of a wrong or injury.  In some jurisdictions, an offense is aggravated by the circumstance of a previous conviction of the same offense. State v Bruno, 69 Utah 444, 256 P 109. [1]  1. The fact of being increased in gravity or seriousness.  2. Eccles. law. A censure threatening the recipient with an increase in the penalties associated with excommunication, usu. because the recipient disregarded an earlier sentence.  *  For example, a person who spurned a sentence of excommunication might be subjected to an anathema (a formal ban or curse).  — aggravate, vb. [3]

aggravation rule (1968) Workers’ compensation. The principle that when an on-the-job injury combines with a preexisting injury, resulting in a greater disability than that which would have resulted from the on-the-job injury alone, the entire disability is compensable as if it had occurred at work.

aggravator (1985) 1. Someone who commits a crime with an aggravating circumstance.  2. See aggravating circumstance under CIRCUMSTANCE.  Cf. MITIGATOR. [3]

aggravated arson – The intentional damaging by an explosive substance, or setting fire to any structure, watercraft, or movable, wherein it is foreseeable that human life may be endangered. State v Murphy, 214 La 600, 38 So 2d 254. [1]  1. See ARSON. [3]

aggravated assault – An offense variously defined in state statutes, sometimes referring to an assault with intent to commit murder, assault with intent to commit rape, assault with intent to commit robbery etc., at other times referring to a degree of the specific crime of assault. 6 Am 12d Asslt & B § 48. [1]  1. A crime of greater gravity than assault or simple assault, it involves the intent to kill or to do serious bodily harm.  Although the presence of such intent depends upon the circumstances, every state punishes assault with a deadly weapon, assault with intent to rape. and assault with intent to commit murder, among others, as aggravated assault.
  See also assault and battery; criminal assault. [2] 
1. See ASSAULT. [3]

aggravated larceny – The offense in particular forms defined by statute, such as larceny from the person, larceny from a dwellinghouse, larceny from a railv road car, larceny of Federal property, larceny of commodity supplied by a public utility, etc. 32 Am J1st Larc §§ 43 et seq. [1]  1. See LARCENY. [3]

aggravated rape – The offense of rape under circumstances which render the offense more heinous, such as tender age of the victim or a blood relationship between the accused and the victim. State v Daniels, 169 Ohio St 87, 8 Ohio 56, 157 NE2d 736, 76 ALR2d 468.

aggravation of damages – A phrase of several connotations: (1) an increase in compensable damages because of the circumstances which surrounded the injury; (2) an increase in the damages suffered resulting from the failure of the injured party to seek medical relief or the unskilful treatment given by the physician whom he selected and employed, which category comes within the doctrine of avoidable consequences; (3) increasing the severity of a pre-existing physical or mental condition by committing a tort against the afflicted person; and (4) an increase in exemplary or punitive damages because of the high degree of malice in the acts of the defendant which injured the plaintiff. 22 Am 12d Damg § 199
Matter of aggravation does not consist in acts of the same kind and description as those constituting the gist of the action, but in something done by the defendant, on the occasion of committing the trespass, which is, to some extent, of a different legal character from the principal act complained of.
A very graphic illustration of matter in aggravation appears where the plaintiff declares in trespass for breaking and entering his house, and alleges in addition, that the defendant also destroyed goods in the house and debauched his daughter.  Hathaway v Rice, 19 Vt 102, 107. — aka aggravated damages. [1]  1. See punitive damages. [3]

aggravating circumstances – Acts or conduct which increase the seriousness of a criminal act or the gravity of its effect. (EXAMPLE: burglary during which the house is vandalized.) Courts often impose more severe sentences when there are aggravating circumstances.
Compare mitigating circumstances. [2]


Disclaimer: All material throughout this website is compiled in accordance with Fair Use.

[1]: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black, Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-61300-4

[2]: Ballantine’s Law Dictionary with Pronunciations Third Edition by James A. Ballantine (James Arthur 1871-1949).  Edited by William S. Anderson.  © 1969 by THE LAWYER’S CO-OPERATIVE PUBLISHING COMPANY.  Library of Congress Catalog Card No. 68-30931

[3]:  Ballantine’s Law Dictionary Legal Assistant Edition
by Jack Ballantine 
(James Arthur 1871-1949).  Doctored by Jack G. Handler, J.D. © 1994 Delmar by Thomson Learning.  ISBN 0-8273-4874-6.


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