Assault and battery are two terms that are often used in the same sentence or even used interchangeably to describe a physical altercation that may have involved law enforcement, arrests, and common charges like those related to domestic abuse. And although the words ‘assault’ and ‘battery’ do usually go hand in hand, they are different as follows:
Assault is usually the mere presence of a harmful threat, and while that may sound vague and as a legal gray area, it is quite simple. As an example, if someone raises their hand or arm as if they are going to hit you or punch you, that action alone is considered a threat and defines assault. Think of battery as the follow-through on that threat. While assault could be a bluff not turning into actual battery, if someone hits or punches you and establishes actual physical contact and harm, there is battery.
Understanding the distinction is important so that you know how to avoid potentially illegal situations, or if you have just been accused of assault or battery on another person. Because this is considered a serious criminal offense, you should consult an experienced criminal attorney like John Patrick Dolan as soon as possible if you have been charged. Begin preparing for your defense immediately by taking careful time to write down the details of everything that happened during the alleged assault and battery incident that led to you being charged, along with keeping any evidence you may have. Were there witnesses on the scene? If so, compile that information also with names and any available or pertinent contact information.
In an assault and battery case, it is critical to be aware of your legal rights and have expert legal representation like the Dolan Law Offices. Your future could hang in the balance, and there may have been false allegations stemming from your actions in self-defense, defense of another, or you may not have even been there at all. These charges can be even more serious if a juvenile has been charged or if a juvenile was involved in any way—becoming more serious if gang-related activities have been suspected by local law enforcement. Let us help you navigate through this difficult legal time, protecting the best interests of you and your family.
If you need legal assistance with a criminal matter, please call the Dolan Law Offices now. We will listen carefully to your concerns, review your case, and offer advice based on many years of experience. John Patrick Dolan understands California’s complex criminal defense laws including white collar crimes, DUI, domestic violence, sexual assault charges, and violent & serious felonies. At the Dolan Law Offices, we provide the experience you need to help you fight for your rights and best interests. Call us at (760) 775-3739 or contact us online as soon as possible.