a military rifle capable of both automatic and semiautomatic fire, utilizing an intermediate-power cartridge.
a nonmilitary weapon modeled on the military assault rifle, usually modified to allow only semiautomatic fire.
Taser: A Surprising Acronym With An Unsettling StoryThe (debatable) non-lethal weapon that causes temporary paralysis was invented in the 1970s by a man named Jack Cover (who worked for NASA at one point).
Origin of assault rifle
First recorded in 1970–75
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for assault rifle
mainly US a semiautomatic firearm with additional features such as a large magazine, a bayonet fitting, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012