When you hear the terms “assault” and “battery,” they may sound like they’re interchangeable, but they’re actually two different offenses. Assault refers to the intent to instill fear of bodily harm, whereas battery involves the actual physical contact that leads to harm. Both of these offenses fall under criminal law, with serious penalties for those convicted. In this post, we’ll explore the basics of assault and battery and how a criminal defense lawyer can help those accused.
What Is Assault?
Assault is the crime of causing someone to fear that they will be physically harmed. This can be accomplished through verbal threats, physical gestures, or any other behavior that makes the victim feel threatened. Assault does not require any actual physical contact, unlike battery. Some examples of assault include:
- Pointing a gun at someone
- Threatening to punch or harm someone
- Threatening to release harmful animals on someone
- Making a bomb threat
If you’ve been accused of assault, it’s critical to consult immediately with a criminal defense lawyer. An experienced lawyer can help develop a strong defense strategy based on the specifics of your case.
What Is Battery?
Battery is the actual physical contact with someone that results in harm and usually follows an assault. This can be anything from a simple punch or shove to a serious beating. Some common examples of battery include:
- Punching or kicking someone
- Throwing objects at someone that harm them
- Using a weapon to harm someone
The severity of the consequences of a battery conviction can vary widely, depending on the extent of the victim’s injuries. In some cases, a battery conviction may result in a few months in jail, while in others, it may result in years in prison.
How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
Criminal defense lawyers specialize in defending people accused of crimes, including assault and battery. They are trained to evaluate the circumstances of each individual case and develop a strong defense strategy based on the situation.
A criminal defense lawyer can help you in several ways, including:
- Investigating the case: They can gather evidence that proves your innocence or casts doubt on the prosecution’s case.
- Developing a legal strategy: They will help guide you through the legal process and help you understand your options. They will also develop a plea-bargaining strategy if it is in your best interest to accept a plea deal.
- Representing you in court: They will represent you in court and fight for your rights and your freedom.
For more information, contact a criminal defense attorney near you.