Clients often confuse the crime of assault and battery believing them to be one in the same. A Battery requires intentional, physical contact between the accused and alleged victim. Without this contact, the offense is an assault not a battery.
A battery requires no harm to befall the victim. As such, lack of injury is not a defense to the crime. Nor is it a defense if some lacked the intent to cause harm and an injury accidental occurred. With any battery case, the focus of the State's case will center on the intent to make physical, however slight, contact.
A simple battery is a first degree misdemeanor carrying a maximum sentence of a year in jail and/or $1000.00 fine. Yet similar to an assault, the misdemeanor battery charge can be enhanced to a felony. If harm does befall the victim in the form of a permanent injury (ie. broken bones, lost teeth, stitches, etc.), the crime is a felony battery carrying a possible five year prison sentence. If a weapon is used in the commission of the battery, then the penalties can increase significantly. The law provides a wide definition of weapon. Not merely a gun, knife, or baseball bat; a weapon can take the form of a motor vehicle, flower pot, or even a rolling pin. Further, if a person has been convicted of a battery in the past, a second battery charge can be upgraded to a felony without serious injury or without a weapon.
When a battery is alleged to have occurred between two family members, the State Attorney's office domestic violence division takes the case over. Separate from an injunction, a dv battery case requires special attention during its defense including the use of delineations of prosecutions, preemptive battery classes, and bond modification hearings.
If you or someone you care about is facing battery charges in Orlando or anywhere in Orange County or Central Florida, contact our experienced Central Florida battery defense attorneys immediately for a free consultation. You can call us at (407)649-1999 or feel out our online form and we will contact you back shortly.