Assault and Battery
In Florida, an Assault is a criminal offense described as an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent. A simple assault without any aggravating factors is a misdemeanor and punishable by up to 60 days Jail, $500 fine or both.
A Battery is the actual intentional touching or striking of a person against their will. Or, intentionally causing bodily harm of another. A simple battery is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1000 fine or both.
Assault and Battery form the foundation of more serious crimes that involve in criminal threats or actual acts of violence. For example, an aggravated assault is a simple assault that involved an aggravating factor like a weapon. Similarly an aggravated battery may be based on the use of a weapon. If the unlawful touching is sexual in nature, that may form the basis of a Sexual Battery or other Sex Crimes.
Regardless of whether you are charged with an Assault or a Battery or both, it is important to secure the services of an experienced South Florida criminal defense lawyer to represent you.