What Penalties May Be Imposed For Assault Or Assault And Battery Convictions
When assault or assault and battery is charged as a felony, a judge may order up to 5 years in a Massachusetts state prison for a conviction when:
If serious bodily injuries were suffered by a law enforcement officer, a disabled or elderly person, or a child under age 14, the sentence may be increased to 15 years.
Assault with a deadly weapon is punishable with a 10-year sentence upon conviction, or 15 years if there was serious bodily injury or the defendant was in a protected victim category.
Assault by drugging may be punished upon conviction with a 10-year sentence. If the assault was followed by battery, the sentence may increase to 15 years. Assault with intent to rape is punishable upon conviction with as much as 20 years, or in some cases, life in prison.
Assault & Battery Examples
There are many different examples of assaults and batteries that I either studied in law school, prosecuted, or litigated as a criminal defense attorney over the past 15 years.
A common example is when two people get into a fight. As long as the two people are not household members under the statute , then a fight can be an example of assault and battery. Road rage is another example, depending on the severity of the injuries of the victim.
Here is another example: if someone is working at a nursing home facility, and they throw something at a patient at the facility, this could be Assault and Battery however, if this was simply an accident and the person charged with assault and battery did not have the requisite intent to harm the victim, the state may have a harder case to prove.
Some other examples of assault and battery could be if someone knocks a phone out of the victims hand on purpose. If an aunt hits their niece without permission. Assault and Battery could include pistol whipping someone, pointing a gun at someone, directly or indirectly threatening someone . The list goes on of the different types of assault and battery.
What Is The Definition Of Assault
Assault is often defined as any intentional act that causes another person to fear an attack or imminent physical harm. This definition recognizes that placing another person in fear of bodily harm is itself an act deserving of punishment, even if the victim of the assault is not physically harmed. This definition also allows police officers to intervene and make an arrest without waiting for the assaulter to actually strike the victim.
Assault example: Snider is walking down a city street carrying a bottle of soda. Mantle, walking along the same street in the opposite direction, sees Snider approaching. Because of Sniderâs reputation as a hothead, Mantle immediately becomes fearful that Snider will swing the bottle at him when their paths cross. As they walk past each other, nothing happens. Snider has not committed an assault. Snider has a right to carry a bottle of soda in public, and Mantleâs fear of being hit was not the result of Snyderâs intentionally threatening behavior. But now assume that, as they draw closer, Snider draws back his fist and tells Mantle âYouâre going to pay for stealing my collection of baseball pennants.â As Snider begins to swing his fist in Mantleâs direction, Mantle sprints away and escapes harm. Here, Snider has committed an assault. His intentional conduct placed Mantle in reasonable fear of immediate bodily harm.
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Can I Be Charged With Both Assault And Battery In Florida
In Florida, you can be charged with both assault and battery, even though they are different types of crimes. To be convicted of both, certain factors must be proven in the case. Our Fort Lauderdale criminal attorney explains what you need to know about both crimes in Florida and what possible defenses may be used in your case.
Our dedicated Fort Lauderdale criminal attorney will fight to get your charges dropped or reduced in order to avoid facing severe penalties, such as time in jail.
Assault And Battery In Massachusetts: Our Guide
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Among the different crimes that are recorded in Massachusetts every year, assault and battery are the most common ones committed.
Compared to other charges like murder, homicide, robbery, and fraud, the types of charges mentioned above have constantly increased in terms of frequency. Whether they are committed together or as individual or stand-alone offenses, the commonality of assault and battery bears a certain level of importance that implores citizens to know more about them.
However, theres one problem that remains constant: most Massachusetts citizens are far less familiar or have bare-minimum knowledge about assault and battery than they should be.
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Is An Assault Charge A Misdemeanor Or A Felony
Generally, assault charges in Massachusetts are considered misdemeanors unless the victim is a Police Officer, or you are charged with aggravated assault which are are classified as felonies.
Cases in which there is domestic aggravated assault are also very serious. That type of assault is defined as an unlawful attack by one family member upon another with the intent of inflicting serious injury through the use or threatened use of dangerous weapons.
Penalties for being accused of committing any violent felony can involve very serious jail time and it is highly recommended that you seek the advice and assistance of an attorney experienced in this area of the law. Our office has had great success with this type of case, and we urge you to contact us to consult and evaluate your case.
The Consequences Of An Assault And Battery Charge
A person can be charged with assault when he or she puts a fear of harm in another person. A person commits battery when he or she makes unwelcomed physical contact with another individual that results in harm or injury. Assault and battery is a result of putting the fear of harm in another person and making the physical contact that results in harm or injury.
Domestic assault is an abusive, violent, or threatening word or act imposed by one family member to another family member. A domestic relationship in most states include an immediate family member or loved one, as well as any other person you might room with or have a relationship. This may include:
Wife or husband
According to Massachusetts law, an assault or an assault and battery are punishable up to two and a half years behind bars with fines of up to $1,000. The penalties can be up to five years in prison with fines up to $5,000 when the victim is pregnant, experienced serious bodily harm or injury. If a protection order was established during the time of the assault, the penalties can be up to five years in prison with fines up to $5,000. The penalties for assaults can increase, if the victims are children, a senior citizen, mentally disabled, a police officer, an EMS staffer or a public worker.
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When Is Assault Domestic Violence
An assault or assault and battery is domestic violence when the purported assailant and victim are:
Massachusetts prosecutors do not drop domestic violence charges merely upon a purported victims request. In fact, Massachusetts law enforcement officers may arrest a suspect at the scene if they know or reasonably believe that an incident of domestic violence has occurred.
Assault To Cause Intimidation
Your motives may be called into question and you can be charged with this offense if it is found that you acted to intimidate or assault someone because of their race, religion, origin, sexual orientation, or disability.
Depending on the results of your actions in this type of case, you could be looking at 2 ½ to ten years. In addition, when convicted of an offense commonly known as a hate crime, you will be ordered to attend a diversity training session.
As with any assault crime, if you use a weapon in the commission of this act you could be charged with additional criminal offenses. See my weapons offense pagefor more details.
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How Are Assault And Assault And Battery Defined In Massachusetts
In Massachusetts, there is no criminal charge simply for battery. You could be charged with assault or with assault and battery. Assault is a different, separate crime from assault and battery. What constitutes assault?
Actually physically touching a victim is not required in order for an assault charge to be filed. Throwing a punch that misses is an example of the first kind of assault. Balling up your fist and aiming it at someone, even if no punch is thrown, is an example of the second kind of assault.
A victim must be deliberately, physically touched in a manner intended to cause bodily harm in order for an assault and battery charge to be filed.
Las Vegas Assault Attorney Explains Battery Charges In Nevada
Assault and battery are considered crimes against the person in Nevada. Charges for assault and battery can range from simple misdemeanors to serious felonies, and the reasons for one sentence rather than another can be convoluted. It is also important to understand that you can be charged with both crimes based on the same set of circumstances which led to arrest.
A qualified and experienced Las Vegas assault and battery defense lawyer can navigate the complexities of assault and battery crimes to reduce the charges or even have them dismissed, especially if you have been charged with both crimes.
Because these crimes can result in a a felony criminal record, your best bet is to hire an experienced and aggressive assault and battery defense lawyer in Las Vegas as soon after arrest as possible to start your defense.
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Criminal Defense For Assault And Battery
An experienced Criminal Defense Attorney who has successfully defended clients accused of Assault and Battery crimes will work hard on your behalf to protect your rights and your freedom. They may try to argue that you were acting in self defense, protecting another person or defending your property when the interaction got physical.
Proving voluntary consent is another defense against these charges. If you engage in a physical activity and someone gets hurt, that is not a crime of assault and battery. For example, players in a football game consent to and expect physical contact of a reasonable nature. If, however, they are hurt because another player deliberately tried to hurt them, that could be assault and battery. The issue at point here is whether or not the contact was more than what was reasonable and common.
If you are accused of assault or assault and battery, get competent legal advice and representation right away. You have no time to waste your attorney will work diligently to examine all details of your case and work up a strong defense case to present to a judge or jury. If you are convicted, your attorney will make an appeal and possibly be able to get charges reduced to a lower level or eliminated.
What Is The Typical First Time Assault And Battery Sentence
When it comes to assault and battery charges, jail time possibility and fines vary based on whether or not the offense is charged as a misdemeanor or felony.
Simple assault and simple battery are misdemeanor offenses. A simple misdemeanor assault is punishable by up to six months in county jail and/or $1,000, unless the assault is against certain government, medical and related authorities. A simple misdemeanor battery is punishable by up to six months in county jail and/or $2,000.
Where things get complicated with assessing a potential assault and battery punishment is that an aggravated assault sentence or aggravated battery sentence often brings a host of other penalties and can escalate the offense to a felony.
If you use a deadly weapon in a threatening way, even if you dont use it, you will likely get charged with assault with a deadly weapon, an aggravated assault under California PC 245. A wobbler, if still a misdemeanor, the sentence escalates to a possible 364 days in jail. As a felony, the penalty can jump up to four years in prison.
Aggravated battery charges are even more serious because this means someone got really hurt, and depending on the severity of the injury, can also escalate the charge to a felony with up to four years in prison as a charge unto itself, but can also be added as an enhancement to a battery charge, increasing the penalty even more. Either way, the victims injury is the basis for the increased punishment.
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What If I Just Made A Threat And Didnt Intend To Act On It
Threats can truly come back to bite you. Even if you werent going to cause an imminent , a Criminal Threat, falling under California PC 422, is a strike-able offense. If you threaten something specific, electronically or verbally, and it makes someone afraid you are going to hurt them or their family, you could be charged. When in doubt, dont make the threat, or if too late, contact a defense attorney right away.
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Contact us today for an initial consultation at 825-3800 or schedule an appointment online on our Contact Us page. It gets better with Proper Defense, we promise.
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Misdemeanor Or Felony Penalties
In many assault and assault-and-battery crimes, the law allows a judge to impose either a misdemeanor of two-and-a-half years in jail or a felony sentence of three or more years in prison. The penalties listed below discuss the maximum felony penalty that can be imposed in such cases, but the judge retains the option of imposing a two-and-a-half-year sentence as well.
A judge can impose up to three or five years in prison for the following assault and assault-and-battery convictions where:
- serious bodily injury results
- the defendant knew the victim was pregnant
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Massachusetts Laws And Penalties
Under the laws of Massachusetts, assault is treated as a separate crime from assault and battery. You have committed assault if you attempt to use physical force against another party, or demonstrate an intent to use immediate force against another party.
You do not need to cause injury to another person or even make physical contact with the person for assault to be committed. For instance, trying to punch someone in the face, even if the punch does not connect, can be charged as assault. For this form of assault, the other person does not need to have been afraid or have been aware of your actions.
Another type of assault is running up to a person with your fists up. This type of assault is where you put the victim in fear of being harmed, and the conduct was perceived as being threatening.
Massachusetts Assault and battery
Assault and battery has been committed if you touched the victim in a deliberate way that was likely to cause bodily harm, or without the consent of the victim. For instance, hitting a person is assault and battery under Massachusetts law. The victim does not need to have sustained any injury physical contact is all that is required.
Massachusetts Serious bodily injury
Assaults and batteries that lead to injury are punished more severely in Massachusetts.
Committing an assault on a child under the age of 14 that leads to bodily injury or substantial bodily injury may be punished as a misdemeanor or felony.
Penalties For Massachusetts Domestic Assault And Battery Charges
A Massachusetts domestic assault and battery can be charged in a number of different ways:
All four of these charges if occurring in the context of a family, dating relationship or spouse relationship will be considered a domestic charge by the prosecutors in Massachusetts.
Assault & Battery
A domestic assault and battery charge in Massachusetts carries with it a maximum potential penalty of 2.5 years in the house of correction. For someone with little or no record, jail time in a case with no injuries probably would not be imposed.
IMPORTANT TO NOTE: After admission or accepting a plea on a domestic assault and battery charge, a common condition of probation is completing either one of the following programs:
- Anger management, 16 weeks.
- Certified Batters Program, 40 Weeks.
A domestic assault charge can also be brought as assault and battery with a dangerous weapon:
Felony Assault & Battery
An assault and battery with a dangerous weapon is a felony charge. An assault with a dangerous weapon is a charge where the Commonwealth can seek an indictment, moving the case to superior court and raising the maximum penalty to ten years in the State prison. Most domestic assault and battery charges will remain in the district court unless there is substantial injury to the victim or the defendant has a history of domestic violence and or violent crime.
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