According to the California Department of Justice, in 2018, there were approximately 367,972 reported cases of assault crimes. In California, an individual may be charged with assault crimes for getting involved in a physical altercation with another person. Such crimes include simple assault, battery, and aggravated assault or battery. Depending on the severity of the injuries inflicted and other surrounding circumstances, the defendant may be facing severe penalties, including hefty fines and lengthy jail time.
If you are facing assault and battery charges in California, it is important to retain a skilled and aggressive criminal defense attorney immediately to help protect your rights and build your defense. McCready Law Group provides comprehensive legal services to clients who have been arrested and charged with assault and battery crimes. As an experienced California criminal defense attorney, I can fight vigorously to help protect your rights and seek fair treatment for your charges.
McCready Law Group proudly serves clients throughout Long Beach, California, and the surrounding communities of Cypress Hill and Lakewood.
Differentiating Between Assault and Battery
"Assault and battery" is a common phrase that is often used together. Although the same California law criminalizes both assault and battery (Chapter 9 of the California Penal Code), these two terms are quite different.
According to California Penal Code Section 240, the crime of assault or "simple assault" occurs when a person uses an "unlawful attempt" to inflict a violent injury on another person. Attempting to hit someone during a heated argument, even when you miss, is considered “simple assault” in California.
According to California Penal Code Section 242, battery can be described as using physical force or violence against another party. Examples include showing or striking someone with a fist during an argument. Other examples include pushing someone or hitting another person using an object which inflicts a bodily injury on the victim.
Aggravated Assault or Battery
Aggravated assault or battery involves a clear intent to commit serious bodily injury to another person. An assault or battery charge becomes aggravated if it is obvious that the defendant wanted to inflict or inflicted severe damage or bodily injury without any regard for the victim's life. For instance, using a deadly weapon against another person is usually considered an aggravating circumstance. Such a charge may be elevated to aggravated assault or battery.