Assault & Battery
If you have been charged with assault, battery or both in Santa Ana, California, you need to have competent representation on your side, an attorney who will stand by you and protect your rights. Call Attorney David Gonzalez today for a free consultation regarding your case.
Definitions and Penalties
Charges vary for assault and battery from simple to severe, depending upon the victim and circumstances surrounding the assault and battery. In California, assault is defined as “an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability to commit a violent injury on another person.” The different categories of assault are:
- Simple assault—a conviction of simple assault could result in up to 6 months in jail and $1,000 in fines. It is important to understand that there is no requirement of physical contact for an assault charge.
- Assault on a police officer—because a police officer was the intended target, enhancements to the charges are automatic. Enhancements for assault charges can be brought dependent upon other factors such as the location of the incident, as well as other people involved.
- Assault with a deadly weapon—immediate upgrade to felony charges when a deadly weapon is introduced into the assault charges, and a “deadly weapon” is basically whatever the court deems deadly, such as a bat, a tire iron, or similar. Convictions carry fines up to $10,000 and 4 months in prison.
- Assault with a firearm—California law states that having a firearm with you or on your person in the act of committing assault constitutes assault with a firearm, and that is a felony. Convictions carry fines up to $10,000 and 4 years in prison.
Battery is actually a different charge, although the term “assault and battery” is usually together. Battery is defined by California law as “any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon another person.” The different categories of battery are as follows:
Simple battery—may be a misdemeanor or a felony, as determined by the judge, penalties up to $2,000 in fines and 6 months in jail.
Battery with injury—depending upon circumstances, convictions can be up to 4 years in jail, and up to $10,000 in fines.
Battery on a police officer—convictions will usually result in the highest fines and jail sentences.
As with assault, determination of the seriousness of the situation is open to interpretation. Most judges and prosecutors will lean on the side of harshness for the defendant, and aim for the highest fines as well as the longest jail or prison sentences. A Santa Ana defense attorney fighting for you will be able to have your side of the story on record and could significantly reduce your fines or jail sentence.
Protect Your Rights
There are several levels of assault and battery charges that can happen. The best way for you to protect your rights is to have an attorney on your side that is familiar with California law and can help you determine your best course of action. The prosecution wants the maximum penalties for you, no matter what the situation actually warrants. Contact Attorney David Gonzalez today and find out how we can help you.