Newport Beach Assault and Battery Lawyers
Helping Those Accused in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino & Los Angeles
In California, assault is one of the most commonly charged crimes. According to the Office of the Attorney General, more than 300,000 assaults occur every year in the state. Aggravated assaults involving the use of a weapon were reported almost 3,600 times in Orange County during 2014.
Too often, assault charges are filed against innocent individuals who committed no crime. Those facing charges for assault need to contact our Newport Beach assault lawyers for a free case evaluation. Not only can an attorney help you better understand your options, but they will also provide you with information that could help you stay out of jail.
A simple assault, as defined by California Penal Code 240, is nothing more than a willful attempt to inflict an injury upon another person. Assault is often associated with battery. Battery is defined as deliberately forcing or fighting someone else. Regardless of whether an injury was caused, the main factor of the crime is that an offender had intended and attempted to hurt someone else.
Schedule your free consultation by calling the Law Offices of Randy Collins at (844) 285-9559 today. We will give the prompt and personal attention you deserve.
What Are the Penalties for Assault and Battery?
Simple assault is a misdemeanor.
Under California law, the penalties for these types of violent offenses include:
- Up to $2,000 in fines
- Up to 6 months in jail
Battery can be minor or serious. It could be that someone poked someone else, and this contact was seen as threatening. Injuries could be as serious as a cut or broken bone or limb.
What happens if the victim sustains injuries? Under California Penal Code 243 D, the crime is then categorized as an aggravated offense.
The penalties for this crime include:
- Misdemeanor: up to one year in jail, and/or up to $1,000 in fines
- Felony: 2, 3, or 4 years in prison, and/or up to $10,000 in fines
Other factors that come into play when prosecutors handle assault and battery cases include the severity of injuries or the relationship of the parties involved. For example, the court will enforce heavier penalties if the offense was committed against a spouse or a peace officer.
In addition to the penalties outlined above for each crime, most assault cases require offenders to participate in a batterer’s program. Other sentencing may include community service and probation.
What’s the Difference Between Assault and Battery?
The main difference between these offenses is that battery involves physical contact, while assault is an attempt to use force or violence that did not result in physical contact. The most recognizable distinction is physical contact. If physical contact occurred, it becomes quite easy to differentiate between the two.
An example of assault would be when someone swings a bat at someone, but there was no impact. If the bat hit the other person causing injury, the victim can file battery charges against the offender. Battery, on the other hand, involves assault, since an effort was made to hurt some else.
While battery requires proof that the accused caused an injury, assault merely requires proof that the accused did something that was likely to result in an injury.
Battery Against a Spouse
Battery against a spouse could be anyone the batterer has or had an intimate relationship with. It could be a current or former spouse, partner, or parent of a child. The elements of the crime are the same as simple battery (that is willfully using force or violence against another), with the inclusion that both parties were related domestically.
- Up to $2,000 in fines
- Up to 1 year in jail
California Penal Code 243.4 Sexual Battery
This offense involves the use of force, violence, or threat on another to gratify oneself sexually, and without the person’s consent.
The relation of sexual battery to assault laws is that this sexual contact was unwanted. The penalties for criminal sexual charges depend on several factors, including the victim’s age, health, and injuries.
The punishments include either:
- Misdemeanor: 6 months in jail, and up to $2,000 in fines
- Felony: 2, 3 or 4 years in prison, and up to $10,000 in fines
Other potential penalties include probation and lifetime registration as a sex offender.
California Penal Code 245 A: Assault with a Deadly Weapon (ADW)
An assault is an attempt to injure or harm someone else. When a person attempts an assault with a deadly weapon, sentencing is increased. A deadly weapon could include a knife, gun, or some object that would cause significant harm to someone that’s targeted.
Prosecutors can charge ADW as a serious misdemeanor or as a felony. The crime of assault with a deadly weapon is always a felony if it is committed against a police officer or if certain kinds of firearms and other weapons are used to commit the crime.
The penalties for ADW include:
- Misdemeanor: up to one year in jail, up to $10,000 in fines, confiscation of weapons
- Felony: 2 or 4 years in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, confiscation of weapons
The judge may additionally order offenders to enroll in anger management classes, participate in community service, and pay victim restitution.
Defenses for Assaultive Offenses
Some assault and battery allegations result from mistaken perceptions. Others may be motivated by jealousy or envy, by a desire for revenge, or by the belief that the accuser’s job security will be enhanced if an assault arrest leads to the termination of someone else’s employment.
A few types of defenses raised in assault and battery cases include:
- The accused was exercising self-defense, and it was the other party who committed the offense
- There was no intention to harm the person, or it was an act of consent
- The defendant was wrongly accused
- If the circumstances involved minors, it was the parent/s merely exercising discipline, with no injuries. An example would be spanking a child.
Contact Our Newport Beach Assault Lawyers for Help
It’s important to contact a criminal defense lawyer, given that most assault cases can subject offenders to the Three Strikes Law in California.
Call the Law Offices of Randy Collins today if you’re facing assault and battery charges. Our Newport Beach attorneys can help defend your innocence, and work toward a favorable outcome for your case. We will bring superior legal experience to aid you in this challenging time.
Over 45 years of Collective Experience
Thousands of Cases Successfully Handled
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Our hard work and dedication have created a reputation that precedes us, and you will need every advantage available when your freedom is on the line.
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