Definition Of Assault And Battery

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Understand Criminal Law in 18 Minutes (Part II)

With assault and battery charges, your freedom, future, and reputation are on the line. In order to achieve a favorable outcome, you should enlist the help of a criminal attorney that has experience dealing with these types of cases.

Goldman Wetzel is a criminal defense law firm that represents clients facing charges for assault and battery in the Tampa Bay area including Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee and Sarasota counties as well as surrounding areas.

If you or your loved one are facing criminal charges for assault and battery in Florida, there are different legal paths that you could pursue. Get the Goldman Wetzel criminal defense attorneys on your side and fight for your rights. Schedule a free consultation by sending us a message or call us directly at .

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How Is Assault And Battery Defined In Michigan

At Prain Law, PLLC, we’re not just one of those general “criminal defense” law practices we concentrate our practice on defending only Assault charges, such as Michigan Assault and Battery cases. Each day at Prain Law, PLLC, we answer the basic yet very important question:What is Assault and Battery in Michigan?

A Michigan Assault and Battery charge is when someone allegedly assaults or assaults and batters another person.

Under Michigan law, a Battery is a touching of another person or something closely connected with them that is forceful, violent, or offensive in nature. Force and violence are defined as something intended to harm or embarrass that other person. The touching must beintentional an accidental touching cannot meet the definition of Battery under Michigan law. The touching must also be against the other persons will. In other words, where the other personconsented to the touching, like participants in a physical sport, the touching will not meet the Michigan definition of a Battery.

In Michigan, an Assault is a criminal act that falls short of a Battery because there is no touching.

An Assault in Michigan can be either of two alternate things, either:

  • an unsuccessful attempt to commit a Battery or
  • any act that would cause a reasonable person to fear or apprehend an immediate Battery .

Definition Of Assault And Battery In Florida

In Florida, assault and battery are different offenses. Battery occurs when an individual deliberately touches, strikes, or causes bodily harm to another person. Assault is threatening a person to commit a violent act against him or her. Simple forms of assault and battery are considered misdemeanors.

Since they are related and commonly conflated, assault and battery are often confused. Nevertheless, in Florida, there is a difference between these crimes and the penalties associated with them. Both offenses imply some violence, but the distinction between these crimes lies in the severity and form of violence involved.

In other words, the difference between an assault and battery is that an assault is a threat and does not use physical violence or contact while a battery offense implies violent physical contact such as striking. In short, battery charges are considered slightly more violent than assault crimes.

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Example Of Attempted Battery Assault Intent

Change the example in Section 10 Example of Attempted Battery Assault Act so that Dan hands Diana a pistol and comments that it is unloaded. Diana says, Really? Well, then, I can do this! She thereafter points the gun at Dan and playfully pulls the trigger. The gun malfunctions and does not shoot, although it is loaded. Diana probably cannot be charged with or convicted of attempted battery assault in this case. Although Diana took every step necessary toward making harmful physical contact with Dan, she was acting with negligent, not specific or purposeful, intent. Thus the criminal intent element for attempted battery assault is absent, and Diana could only be charged with a lesser offense such as negligent handling of firearms.

Resisting Excessive Use Of Force During An Arrest

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If a police officer uses an excessive amount of force during an arrest, the arrestee may generally use a reasonable amount of force to resist. But what counts as “excessive” and what qualifies as “reasonable” are highly fact intensive, making it extremely difficult for a defendant to win on this defense.

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Felony Penalties For Increasing Levels Of Harm Or Risk Of Harm

For other felony assault and battery offenses, the penalties will generally increase as the level or risk of harm increases. For instance, a state might penalize battery resulting in serious bodily harm as a 10-year felony and battery resulting in great bodily harm or risk of death as a 15-year felony. Likewise, someone who assaults another by pointing a gun at them will generally face a harsher penalty than the person who threatens to attack someone without a deadly weapon.

Assault Vs Battery Criminal Law

Assault and battery are essentially two different offenses that can be committed independent of one another or in the context of the same event.

Assault is when a person threatens another with physical violence resulting in the other person apprehending an imminent physical harm.

On the other hand, battery is when a person actually engages in physically harming another.

Under criminal law, you may hear references to assault and battery but they are two concepts that are used together to refer to an event when a person threatened to cause another physical injury and actually went through with it.

For a person to be found guilty of assault, battery, or assault battery, the prosecutor must prove beyond reasonable doubt that the person knowingly or intentionally committed the act without legal justification.

In many states, simple assault is a minor misdemeanor resulting in a potential fine and short jail time.

Aggravated assault is a more serious type of misdemeanor resulting in possibly higher fines and longer jail sentences.

Simple battery will generally be a serious misdemeanor resulting in higher fines and longer jail sentences.

Aggravated battery is when theres great bodily harm and, in most cases, will be considered a felony.

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Assault And Battery In Florida

When an argument or dispute spirals out of control and results in violence or threats, one or both parties involved might be arrested for assault and battery. Given their violent nature, a conviction for assault and battery in Florida leads to a permanent criminal record, fines and imprisonment. In order to avoid these consequences, consider hiring a criminal lawyer to help.

Assault and battery are two of the most common violent crimes. But this does not mean that these charges are trivial. In fact, if you are arrested or are facing charges for an assault or battery, you need to prepare a strong defense that helps you beat or reduce your charges.

If you have questions or want to discuss your charges with an experienced attorney, speak to the violent lawyers at Goldman Wetzel and find out what we can do on your behalf.

Aggravated Assault And Battery

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When the conduct of a defendant is particularly egregious, he or she may be charged with the elevated crime of aggravated assault or battery. This can vary by state, but it is generally meant to criminalize conduct that society finds particularly offensive. Thus, for instance, aggravated assault may apply to circumstances when a deadly weapon, such as a gun, is used, or when the victim is particularly vulnerable, such as a pregnant woman or elderly individual. In some states, if the harm done to the victim is particularly severe and causes serious and lasting injury, the assault or battery will be charged as aggravated. If the perpetrators actions could have caused death, the defendant may even face a charge of attempted murder or manslaughter.

Last reviewed October 2022

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Read A Brief Summary Of This Topic

assault and battery, related but distinct crimes, battery being the unlawful application of physical force to another and assault being an attempt to commit battery or an act that causes another reasonably to fear an imminent battery. These concepts are found in most legal systems and together with manslaughter and murder are designed to protect the individual from rude and undesired physical contact or force and from the fear or threat thereof.

No minimum degree of force is necessary to constitute a battery. A mere touch is sufficient. And force need not be applied directly. It is battery if one strikes a persons cane or horse, administers poison or drugs, or communicates a disease.

An accident or ordinary negligence that results in injury is not criminally punishable as battery unless it occurred during the commission of another unlawful offense. Generally, one does not commit battery unless one acts with intent to harm or with gross criminal negligence involving a high degree of carelessness. Even then such action may be justified if it is for the purpose of the defense of others or of property, or if it is in self-defense . Reasonable force may be used in the performance of duty, as, for example, by a police officer, without constituting battery.

Assault And Battery Definition

In Texas, assault and battery are actually two different crimes. It is true that they are linked closely to each other. However, the state defines assault as threatening another person with bodily harm and defines battery as actual bodily contact that results in injury.

Along with being criminal offenses in Texas, assault and battery are also intentional torts. This definition allows a victim to sue his or her attacker for assault and/or battery in civil court to gain compensation for his or her injuries.

As in most states, there are different levels of assault and battery in Texas. An offense can be charged as assault even if battery also occurs. In fact, in most criminal cases involving both assault and battery, the crime is simply charged as assault. The charge still carries with it hefty punishments ranging from civil fines to prison terms.

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Defining Assault In New York Criminal Law

New York penal law does not mention battery. Instead, crimes of physical violence use the term assault. Assault under New York criminal law concerns what is often referred to as battery in the civil context or in some other states.

There are several different levels of assault in New York. A conviction for assault in the lowest form, assault in the third degree requires that the defendant caused someone physical harm with the intent to do so, or did so through reckless conduct or criminal negligence. More serious degrees of assault may be charged depending on the level of harm caused, the means used , and the nature of the victim .

New York penal law also criminalizes attempted assault as well as threats of violence .

Defenses to an assault charge might include self-defense, defense of others, lack of intent, mistaken identity, consent, and more. Its worthwhile to talk to a criminal defense attorney before making any statements or entering a plea if youve been charged with assault.

How Can A Rhode Island Assault And Battery Attorney Help You

Difference Between Assault and Battery

Attorney, Noah J. Kilroy, has an impressive background with ample trial experience in criminal law matters. He is knowledgeable about misdemeanor and felony assault and battery offenses in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. He uses this knowledge and experience to formulate a customized legal strategy that is designed to the particular specifics surrounding your case.

A solid legal strategy requires determining what legal defenses apply to your case. Our firm will work diligently to get your charges dismissed, keep you out of jail, and keep charges off your record. Our skilled Rhode Island assault and battery defense lawyer has secured dismissals in assault and battery cases. He will investigate your case and analyze the prosecutions evidence against you to craft a legal strategy designed for your case. If the prosecutions evidence does not depict what it says it does, we can bring the truth to light. We hold prosecutors to their high burden of proof to establish that a defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecutor cannot meet this burden, we will use this information to fight for a dismissal or acquittal.

Attorney Noah J. Kilroy spent many years prosecuting assault and battery cases. Now, as a Rhode Island assault and battery defense lawyer with a successful track record of helping clients, he zealously and aggressively will advocate for you.

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Assault And Battery Punishments

Assault and battery punishments vary greatly, depending on the laws of the jurisdiction and the circumstances surrounding the crime. Generally, assault and battery punishments range from fines and community service, to imprisonment of one year or more. While first time offenders may receive more leniency, repeat offenders often face stiffer penalties for similar crimes.

Commonly, felony assault charges result in prison terms of 5 to 25 years. Misdemeanor assault and battery charges may result in probation, a fine, community service, or imprisonment in the county jail for up to one year.

Can Assault Be Expunged

In Texas, there are limited circumstances, but yes, an assault charge can be expunged, if the accused person has been found not guilty or the charges dismissed. In this circumstance, expunged assault charges will be as if the arrest and resulting charge didnt ever happen. All records are deleted, destroyed, and erased from the accused records. If a deferred adjudication is issued for the assault charge, the records are sealed if a motion for non-disclosure is filed. Call today for assault and battery bail in Austin, TX.

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Attempted Battery Assault Act

The criminal act element required for attempted battery assault is an act that attempts to make physical contact with the victim but falls short for some reason. This could be a thrown object that never hits its target, a gunshot that misses, or a punch that doesnt connect. In some states, the defendant must have the present ability to cause harmful or offensive physical contact, even though the contact never takes place . The present ability requirement is simply an extension of the rule that attempt crimes must progress beyond mere preparation. In the majority of jurisdictions, the criminal act element is measured by the Model Penal Codes substantial steps test described in detail in Chapter 7 Parties to Crime . To summarize, the substantial steps test requires the defendant to take substantial steps toward completion of the battery, and the defendants actions must be strongly corroborative of the defendants criminal purpose .

Defining Assault In Massachusetts

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Assault is a distinct and separate crime from that of assault and battery, and carries different penalties if a defendant is convicted of the crime as such. When a person commits an act of assault, they demonstrate an intent to use force against another person, or attempt to use force to cause injury against another. However, an act of assault does not involve the person actually causing physical injury to another. In fact, a defendant need not even make physical contact with another party in order for assault to occur assault is merely the threat of physical contact.

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What Is The Difference Between Assault And Battery In California

Many people believe that assault and battery are interchangeable crimes because theyre often charged together. However, the state of California classifies assault and battery as two separate convictions. Both assault and battery can result in significant penalties, so if youre charged with one or both of these crimes, its important to fight your charges and work to get them reduced or dismissed.

At Crowell Law Offices, were familiar with Californias criminal laws and can use our experience to defend your case in court. A Sacramento violent crime lawyer from our team will investigate your arrest and use evidence to weaken the prosecutions argument.

What Is Assault And Battery

A primary factor in either crime, assault or battery, is having the intent to cause harm to another person. Modern laws pair the offenses of assault and battery together as one, with the idea that making threats of violence, engaging in threatening behavior that causes the victim fear he will be harmed, and actually physically harming someone all show an intent to cause harm.

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Assault And Battery Over An Eldery Person

Simple and aggravated forms of assault result in harsher penalties if the victim was a person over 65years of age. In addition to prison time, the punishment includes minimum fines and prison time, restitution and community work:

  • Assault: from a second degree misdemeanor to a first degree misdemeanor.
  • Aggravated assault: from a first-degree misdemeanor to third-degree felony.
  • Battery: from first degree misdemeanor to a third degree felony.
  • Aggravated battery: from second degree to a first degree felony.

The Main Difference Between Assault And Battery

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The main difference between a battery charge and an assault charge is the actual presence of harm and the threat of harm. Someone can only be charged with battery if they have caused real physical harm to someone, while a person can be charged with assault if the mere threat of harm is present.

Since the charges are distinct, they each have their own set of penalties, should a conviction occur. However, someone facing either charge could be subject to fines as well as a jail sentence. Fortunately, it is possible to fight against criminal charges with the help of a defense attorney.

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