Criminal Assault and Battery Charges

Assault and battery are often grouped together in a criminal charge. The definition of assault is the attempt to or threat of causing harm to a person, whereas the definition of battery is the actual and intentional hitting or attacking of a person. An assault and battery charge can usually be brought to civil or criminal court.

Three Strikes Rule

Under California’s “Three Strikes and You’re Out” law, avoiding an assault and battery felony conviction will make all the difference in your future. Because assault and battery are usually deemed violent crimes, a felony assault and battery conviction will most likely equal a “strike” on your record. Conviction for a third strike crime, even if the third offense is not a felony, will mean a severe prison sentence (up to 25 years in state prison).

Battery Alone

Domestic battery, is a California offense also known as "spousal abuse" or "spousal battery." Under California law, battery is a domestic violence crime that applies to intimate partners. Intimate partners can be of opposite or the same genders, married, divorced, living together, have children in common, or be dating or formerly dating.

An individual can be charged with domestic battery even if he or she used only the slightest force. Any unwanted physical touching can result in a misdemeanor battery charge. However, if an individual suffers serious injury, such as broken bones, loss of consciousness or a concussion, the offense will likely be charged as a felony punishable by a maximum of four years in state prison.

A California domestic battery accusation is a very serious matter. Allegations of an abusive relationship and a resulting domestic violence charge can be devastating emotionally and financially, and a conviction carries severe penalties. To best avoid these consequences, it is imperative that an accused hires a skilled criminal defense lawyer who knows the most effective ways to refute this crime's elements in your legal case.