Assault and Battery Attorney in San Diego
Being charged doesn’t mean you are guilty. Assault happens when one person acts in a way to cause another person to believe he or she was in danger of unwanted bodily contact or actual immediate harm. Just because you are accused doesn’t mean you are guilty. You need an experienced San Diego assault and battery lawyer on your side.
ASSAULT AND BATTERY DEFINED BY SAN DIEGO LAW FIRM
Assault is the threat of harmful violence on another person, even if that person is there is no physical contact and that person is not actually touched. Battery is the unwanted touching of another person with the intent to cause injury. Assault and battery are actually two separate crimes and can be prosecuted as either a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the circumstances. If a gun is involved, you’re talking 20 years in prison. To get a better understanding of the charges you’re facing and the legal options you have, contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
(Click a statute below for additional information)
|PC 240||Assault||Up to 6 months in county jail|
|PC 242||Battery||Up to 1 year in county jail|
|PC 245 (a)(1)||Assault with weapon of force likely to produce great bodily injury||Up to 3 years in prison – More if great bodily injury occurs|
|PC 211||Robbery||Up to 4 years in state prison|
There are several different types of assault and battery charges in California law:
- Simple Battery
- Sexual Battery ( Also known as Sex Crimes )
- Battery on a Spouse or Girlfriend/Boyfriend (Also known as Domestic Violence)
- Assault with Deadly Weapon . If Great Bodily Injury is charged, the crime is elevated to a “Strike.”
- Assault with a Firearm
SAN DIEGO COUNTY LAWYER EXPLAINS DIFFERENT TYPES OF ASSAULT AND BATTERY
“Aggravated Assault” is a commonly used term for the crime of “Assault with a Deadly Weapon” (ADW). The California Penal Code 245 defines this crime as one that is committed with any type of deadly weapon or by means of force that is likely to cause great bodily injury to another. In the first section of this code, it defines the crime of assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm. Any item that can be used as a weapon can fall under this category. Weapons can include almost anything (other than a body part) that has the ability to cause considerable harm to another if used in a threatening and forceful way. For example, a screwdriver that is used in an assault can qualify as a weapon even though it can also be used for innocent purposes.
However, assault with a firearm is also illegal in the state of California. The California “assault with a firearm” law prohibits assaulting someone with a firearm. You can be arrested by the police and charged in violation of this law by:
- firing a gun at another person
- pointing a loaded gun at another person, or
- using a gun to bludgeon or ”pistol whip” another person.
CAN ASSAULT OCCUR WITHOUT BATTERY?
California assault can take place even though no battery occurs. However, a battery necessarily includes an assault. This is because it is impossible to commit a battery (a willful act) without first attempting to do so. Assault and battery charges can be classified in two ways: misdemeanor and felony. People are often charged with a felony when the assault or battery results in serious injuries. The misdemeanor categorization is used when the incident, such as a fist fight, results only in minor injuries.
California assault and battery are severe charges. Because conviction on these charges carries with it serious penalties, such as jail time and heavy fines, it is important that you take any and all investigations or assault and battery arrests very seriously. Experienced legal counsel will be your best defense. If you have been charged, contact an assault and battery attorney at our law firm as soon as possible after an arrest.
EXPERIENCED ATTORNEYS DISCUSS WHAT MUST BE PROVED
In order to prove an assault under CPC 240, it must be shown that:
- The defendant participated in an action that would have probably resulted in the use of force to another.
- The defendant participated in that action willfully.
- When the defendant willfully acted, he/she was conscious of the fact that this action would probably result in the use of force against another.
- When the defendant acted, he/she had the ability to apply force to a person.
If you are arrested for a battery charge a prosecutor must prove under CPC 242 that you willfully used force or violence upon another. “Willfully” means that the defendant had the willingness or desire to use force. Touching the other person, his or her clothing, or something attached to or closely connected to that person can often be charged as a battery if the intent of harm was found to be present.
TOP LAW FIRMS IN SAN DIEGO CAN HELP YOU FIGHT ASSAULT AND BATTERY CHARGES
Being charged is a serious matter. If convicted of this offense in court, you could end up in jail for up to 6 months or pay a fine up to $1,000. And if you get an enhancement – an action that results in more penalties – you could see more jail time:
- Assault/Battery Issuing Great Bodily Injury (GBI): Up to 4 years
- Assault/Battery with a Firearm: 20 years
- Assault/Battery with a Machine Gun or Semiautomatic Weapon: Add 12 years to your sentence
To fight these charges, you will need the legal advice of an experienced criminal defense lawyer from one of the top law firms in San Diego. Although it is not required, it is strongly recommended you work with a San Diego criminal defense attorney instead of a public defender. Contact one of our lawyers today.
SEEK REPRESENTATION FROM LAWYERS WITH OVER 30 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE
Do you need an experienced lawyer? Call Elliott N. Kanter. It can be a very frightening experience if you or someone in your family is charged with assault—but remember, you have rights. What you shouldn’t do is delay in calling a lawyer who can get you through this difficult time with skill and compassion. Our attorneys have over 30 years of experience defending clients in various criminal cases. Some of our law firm’s many practice areas include assault and battery, DUI, probation, juvenile crimes, theft, elder abuse, fraud, and drug crimes. So please contact the Law Offices of Elliott N. Kanter by phone at (619) 330-5881 or fill out the form on this website for a free consultation today. You can also email [email protected] to discuss your case in privacy. Come in to our office, located at 2445 5th Ave, Suite #350, San Diego, 92101. Tell us your side of the story, and together we’ll get started on your battery or assault case.
WHAT ARE THE CALIFORNIA ASSAULT AND BATTERY STATUTES?
An assault is an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to commit a violent injury on the person of another.
A battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.
Statute 245. (a)(1)
Any person who commits an assault upon the person of another with a deadly weapon or instrument other than a firearm shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or four years, or in a county jail for not exceeding one year, or by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both the fine and imprisonment.
Penal Code 245 (01) is assault with a weapon which is likely to cause great bodily injury. This is a serious crime that carries up to three years in prison (more if great bodily harm was inflicted). Anything that is used to strike a person is a weapon. It does not matter if you actually harm the victim. If your words and actions made the victim feel as if they were in danger, you are guilty of assault.