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Defining Assault and Battery Under Connecticut Law

 Posted on April 24,2023 in Criminal Defense

stamford criminal defense lawyerMany people are under the impression that assault and battery is one charge, however, under Connecticut law, they are two distinct crimes. They are related crimes, with both offenses involving the intentional use of force or violence against another person, but do have important differences. Understanding the difference between assault and battery is crucial for anyone who has been charged.

What Is Assault?

Assault is the act of intentionally causing another person to fear immediate bodily harm or injury. It does not require physical contact. The threat of harm can be either verbal or nonverbal. For example, pointing a gun at someone or threatening to hit them with a baseball bat are two actions that could be considered assault. If a person is arrested for assault, the crime can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances and the severity of the threat.

What Is Battery?

Battery involves the actual physical contact or harmful touching of another person without their consent. It does not require the intent to cause harm or injury, but rather the intentional act of touching in a way that is harmful or offensive. For example, pushing someone or hitting them with a closed fist could both be considered battery. Like assault, battery can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on both the circumstances of the incident and the harm that was caused.

When Can a Person Be Charged with Both Assault and Battery

There are situations where police charge a person with both assault and battery. For example, if an individual threatens to hit another person with a bat – that is the assault – and then follows through with the threat and hits the person with the bat – that is the battery.

Under Connecticut law, assault and battery can be charged at first-degree, second-degree, or third-degree. First and second-degree assault and battery are charged as felonies, while third-degree assault and battery are charged as a misdemeanor.

If one of the following circumstances exist, law enforcement could charge the individual with aggravated assault and battery:

  • The target of the individual suffered a serious injury

  • The individual had intent to cause disfigurement or other serious injury

  • The individual used a gun or other deadly weapon in the incident

  • There was more than one individual committing the assault

  • The person assaulted suffered from advanced age, blindness, mental impairment, pregnancy, or other vulnerability

Contact a Fairfield County Defense Attorney for Legal Help

If you are being accused of assault or battery, make sure you have a dedicated Stamford, CT defense attorney advocating for you. Call Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner at 203-348-5846 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.




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