Coping with Assault and Battery Charges
When two or more people are in in proximity to each other, there is always potential for something unexpected to happen. Everyone is different and therefore have different personalities and reactions to situations. Occasionally, arguments arise and can get blown out of proportion. Unfortunately, when tempers rise, impulse control can be lowered, potentially culminating in an assault and battery charge. While this is a very serious matter, it does not need to be a catastrophe.
Many times, assault and battery charges are paired together, leaving some to believe that it is one potential charge. To clarify, assault and battery are two different actions.
- Assault: The act of threatening someone verbally or physically, or causing them to fear for their safety or life, without actually physically touching the victim. This can be heightened to aggravated assault if a weapon was involved or if you were hooded or disguised during the encounter. There are also various state and government employees, as well as protected professions, where an assault will automatically be considered aggravated.
- Battery: Any point in which your body makes physical contact with the victim in a painful, harmful, violent or offensive manner, even if you perceive the contact as minor.
What Happens Next
Studies have shown that the involvement of alcohol in an argument tends to lower inhibitions and increase the violence of any disagreement. It also lends toward all heightened emotions, even those of hurt and anger which often occurs during arguments and the words that were said can be taken harsher than they were intended. Maybe too much alcohol was consumed and things got out of hand, but each side is remembering an entirely different set of events. In order for a charge to become a conviction, the prosecutor must prove the allegations. Yet, there are several potential defenses for the events that occurred. Some of these are:
- Self defense or defense of another person;
- Defending property;
- Victim consent; or
- The victim was not really feeling threatened as they are claiming.
Although you may feel that the case is not serious and may be unconcerned because you “did not do anything wrong”, assault and battery charges are taken extremely seriously in the state of Illinois. Penalties range from community service all the way up to hefty fines (in the ballpark of $25,000) and imprisonment. Having an aggressive defense attorney on your side can make that difference for your case. Contact our Addison criminal defense attorneys, serving clients in Maywood, Wheaton, Rolling Meadows, Bridgeview Cook County, and all surrounding Chicagoland areas. Stringini & Garvey, P.C. have more than 65 combined years of experience and will boldly defend your rights. Call us today at 630-834-9595 for your free initial consultation.