The Board held that a conviction under California Penal Code section 220 (1994) with a sentence to a year or more is a categorical aggravated felony as a crime of violence under both 18 U.S.C. 16(a) and (b). PC 220 penalizes assault (creating an apprehension of imminent battery) with intent to commit mayhem, rape, or certain other sex offenses.
Even if the assault does not result in an actual application of violent force, the Board found that it is a categorical crime of violence under 18 U.S.C. 16(a) as an offense that has as "an element the use, attempted use, or threatened use of [violent] physical force against the person or property of another." The Board found that the intent, as interpreted by the California Supreme Court, requires the specific intent to use whatever level of violent force is required to complete the object of the offense. Since the intent is to complete the object of the assault (mayhem, rape, etc.), the Board held that every assault under PC 220 required at least attempted use or threatened use of violent force against another.
The Board also held that PC 220 is a categorical crime of violence under 18 U.S.C. 16(b) too, which encompasses “any other offense that is a felony and that, by its nature, involves a substantial risk that physical force against the person or property of another may be used in the course of committing the offense.”
Read the decision at http://www.justice.gov/eoir/vll/intdec/vol25/3723.pdf