Orange County Assault & Battery Defense Attorneys
If you are facing an assault or battery charge in Orange County, CA it is in your best interests to seek legal representation as soon as possible. These are serious crimes that could lead to harsh consequences such as incarceration, fines, probation, and community service. Beyond the potential criminal penalties you could face, a conviction of a violent crime would be a permanent stain on your record that could jeopardize your reputation, career prospects, and relationships for years to come.
At Visco Wohl Law, our criminal defense attorneys have a combined 35 years experience fighting criminal charges. We have the knowledge, skills, and resources to deliver the best possible outcome in your case whether that be preventing a charge from being filed, negotiating a plea deal for a reduced sentence, or achieving a not guilty verdict at trial.
Let us get a jumpstart on customizing a winning defense. Call today (714) 689-6042 to schedule a free consultation.
California Assault & Battery Laws
California laws pertaining to assault and battery can be found in Chapter 9 of the California Penal Code. Assault and battery are separate, distinct criminal offenses but may be prosecuted jointly.
Assault is a deliberate attempt to cause physical harm to another person. The mere threat or implied threat of harm is enough to constitute an assault charge even if no physical contact was made.
Battery is the intentional and unlawful use of force or violence against another person. Any non-consensual or offensive touching could be deemed battery.
Types of Assault Charges & Potential Penalties
Simple Assault is the least serious assault-related charge and is prosecuted as a misdemeanor under California Penal Code Section 240. Taking a swing at someone during a heated confrontation and missing can result in a simple assault charge. A conviction for this offense is punishable by:
- up to six months in county jail and/or a maximum 1,000 fine
- mandatory participation in a Batterer’s Program
- restitution to the victim(s)
- criminal record
The penalties for simple assault are enhanced if committed against peace officer, firefighter, animal control officer, emergency medical technician, life guard, or code enforcement officer.
Assault With a Deadly Weapon is the crime of assaulting another person with a firearm or other weapon by using force to produce great bodily injury. These crimes are prosecuted under Penal Code section 245 as a misdemeanor or a felony and are punishable by:
- up to a year in county jail or up to four years in state prison.
- a felony conviction for this offense may be considered a ‘Strike” under the California Three Strikes Law.
Types of Battery Charges & Potential Penalties
Punching or shoving, spitting or throwing a drink on someone — all are examples of simple battery. Simple battery is prosecuted as a misdemeanor under California Penal Code Section 242 and is punishable by:
- up to six months in county jail and/or maximum fine $2,000
- probation up to six months
Sexual Battery is the unwanted and intimate touching of someone who is unlawfully restrained, disabled, unconscious, or medically incapacitated for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification. This crime can be a misdemeanor or felony and is prosecuted under Penal Code section 243.4 punishable by
- a year in county jail or up to four years in state prison
- lifetime sex offender registration
Battery on a Police Officer: If you committed battery against a police officer, you could face:
- 16 months or two or three years in the county jail or state prison
- a fine up to $10,000, and
- probation up to three years.
Potential Defenses to Beat an Assault or Battery Charge in OC
There are a number of possible defenses available that may be used to avoid a conviction, some of which may include:
Self-defense is the most common defense utilized in an assault and battery case. You can argue that the alleged victim was in fact the aggressor and that you committed the assault or battery only because you felt threatened or in imminent danger of being hurt and there was no way to escape or retreat from the situation.
Lack of Intent: The incident was merely an accident and you had no intention of causing harm or bodily injury.
Consent: The alleged victim knew the physical contact was likely to occur and still engaged in situation.