What is the Legal Definition of Assault and Battery?

What is the Legal Definition of Assault and Battery?

two men about to fight

What is an example of assault?

A disagreement or verbal argument between two people can quickly turn into a physical fight, one person hitting or punching the other. Then a bigger fight ensues, and before you know it, somebody is getting arrested for assault, or assault and aggravated assault. Off to jail that person goes, sometimes all parties involved are arrested and taken to jail. 

Now, what may have been nothing more than a disagreement about something insignificant has turned into a legal mess. A legal mess that is going cost everyone money, and possibly their job and reputation.  Was that assault worth what they’re about to go through? 

Every state has their own definition of assault, but one thing for certain, any definition of assault is a form of violence. The basic, main definitions of assault are: 

Assault as physical connection: This when assault is defined as a person having the intention of using force or violence against another person. This may be physically punching a person or striking a person with an object. Some states consider assault and battery as one crime. Under this definition, “attempted assault” is the act of one person intending to physically harm another person but didn’t follow through. One example of attempted assault would be one person swung their fist at another and missed. 

Assault as an attempt to physically harm: There are other states that physical contact doesn’t have to be made for assault charges to be filed. The definition of assault is the attempt to execute a physical attack. This can include threatening actions that creates fear of violence in the intended person. If that person’s attempt is successful in these states, the charges turn into to battery. Under this methodology, “attempted assault” isn’t the crime because the assault itself was the attempt.

A verbal threat typically doesn’t constitute an assault in this methodology and an action of a fist raised or an abrupt move toward the other person is required to constitute a charge of assault. 

What is the legal definition of assault and battery?

In the state of Georgia, the difference between assault and battery have varying degrees for both, breaking down into category of aggravated or simple. The basic definition of each are: 

  • Assault: Attempted harm or the threat of harming another person.
  • Battery: Actually having physical contact with potential harming a person.

Which is worse battery or assault?

In the state of Georgia, there are five categories under the assault and battery crime: 

  • Simple Assault
  • Aggravated Assault
  • Simple Battery
  • Battery
  • Aggravated battery

The punishment for these charges are: 

Simple Assault Charges

In Georgia, Simple Assault is a misdemeanor and is describe as one person trying to physically injure another person. This can be attempting to hit a person by hand or with an object and missed. Simple Assault is also defined as the act of intention or threat by one person to another, creating a fear of impending violence. Example would be the threat to beating up or knocking another person out with an angry or menacing manner. 

Simple Battery and Battery Charge

A Simple Battery charges is a misdemeanor. This is actual physical contact like hitting a person an object or punching them with a fist or shoving another person intentionally not accidently or in a jokingly manner among friends where no specific intentions were made to injure. 

Simple Assault, Simple Battery and Battery as Aggravated Misdemeanor Charge

In the state of Georgia, a Simple Assault, Simple Battery and Battery are each a misdemeanor.  There are specific cases where these crimes can be an aggravated misdemeanor charge with severe penalties. Any assault or battery on specific victims are charged as an aggravated misdemeanor. Those specific victims include, but not limited to:

  • Family member.
  • Intimate partner.
  • Anyone 65 years of age and older.
  • Public school employee carrying through their duties.

Other aggravated misdemeanors include assault or battery in a public transit station or vehicle, in or on public school property, including school buses, bus stops, battery against a law enforcement officer, or against a pregnant woman.

Is pushing someone assault? 

Yes, in the state of Georgia assault charges are possible when a person has tried to cause physical injury to someone, like striking them with their hand or an object but missed. Or a person used their fist to hit another person or pushed a person during an argument. 

Is yelling at someone assault?

In general, the state of Georgia does not constitute yelling at a person as an assault. Example, yelling, “I’ll shoot you!”, but there isn’t a gun within the area, is not an assault charge. If a weapon is present, then assault charges would be validated. 

Are assault charges a felony?

In Georgia, an aggravated assault is one that includes the intent to murder, rape, or rob a person will be charged as a felony.

For charges of assault, how many years in jail?

In the state of Georgia, an aggravated assault charge is punishable by a prison sentence of one year up to twenty years.

arrested after assault and battery

Can assault be expunged?

The state of Georgia, expunging a criminal charge is a possibility for some offenses, like a first-time drug charge. However, an assault conviction cannot be expunged, restricted, or sealed from a  criminal record, even if the person has received an official pardon. Call 706-353-6467 today for assault and battery bail in Jefferson, GA.