Criminal Law Articles Library

Your Defense: Assault or Battery

Posted by Powers Sellers & Finkelstein | Mar 16, 2022 | 0 Comments

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Lawyer Clearwater

Building your strongest defense while protecting your rights

There are always two sides to a story to describe the circumstances of an Assault or Battery charge. To compound matters, it is frightening to be charged with a serious crime.

When emotions are high, collecting your thoughts long enough to make good decisions can be challenging. From day one, you should take steps to ensure your rights are protected by your case with an experienced defense attorney.

Though you may not feel so hopeful at the moment of your arrest, a successful defense is possible for those facing these charges.

In The Details

There are many defenses that an Assault or Battery defense attorney can provide and the details you provide will help while building your defense. Keep in mind, we will need for you to provide an honest account of the events so we can build a strategy aimed to beat your charges.

The most common defense is self-defense. However, there are a variety of circumstances that may result in the charge, so we will evaluate the details of the alleged crime to determine the following:

  • Did you act in self-defense?
  • Did you act in defense of others under the threat of danger?
  • Is the charge a felony or misdemeanor?
  • Does the prosecutor have enough proof the victim felt they were in imminent danger?
  • Was there mutual combat between the parties?

What Does the Law Say?

Learning more about the charges you're facing is another important step you can take to protect your rights moving forward.

To better understand your charges, you should know that Assault or Battery charges are classified in Florida Law as a felony or misdemeanor. They are separate offenses and are not the same.

Florida law states Assault involves the threat of contact and fear or harm.

However, Battery involves that actual strike that results in physical harm.

There are many variations for each: felony assault, misdemeanor assault, felony battery, and misdemeanor battery.


Florida Statute § 784.011, the offense of “assault” requires proof beyond all reasonable doubt:

  • The defendant threatened by act or word to do violence to the alleged victim, intentionally.
  • At that moment, the defendant appeared to have the ability to carry out the threat; and
  • The defendant's actions created a well-founded fear that the violence was about to occur in the alleged victim's mind.

Simple Battery- First Degree Misdemeanor

Florida Statute § 784.03, the offense of Battery, or “Simple Battery,” requires that the prosecutor proves beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • The defendant intentionally struck or touched the alleged victim against the will of the alleged victim; and
  • The defendant intentionally caused bodily harm to the alleged victim.
  • Charged as a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months in jail.

Felony Battery

The Felony Battery statute, section 784.041, provides as follows:

A person commits Felony Battery if they:

  • Actually and intentionally touch or strike another person against the will of the other;
Assault and Battery Lawyers

Special Circumstances

Pregnant Female

Florida Statutes § 784.045, the crime of Aggravated Battery on a Pregnant Victim requires proof of a battery plus proof beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • The victim was pregnant at the time of the Battery; and
  • The defendant knew or should have known that the victim was pregnant when the Battery was committed.

Prior Charge

Florida Statute Section 784.03(2) might cause a simple misdemeanor battery to be reclassified as a felony because of a prior conviction for “battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery.” § 784.03(2), Fla. Stat.

Charges against certain persons are considered special victims and upgraded to felonies. Individuals include:

  • law enforcement
  • firefighter or health care worker
  • bus driver
  • licensed security officer
  • code inspector
  • Children and Family Services Department employees
  • Person's 65 years and older
  • Sports officials
  • School employees

We will not settle for any offer the State's Attorney's Office has presented until we have considered the effects long term on your record if charges can be sealed or expunged, and other important factors we can discuss with you.

Key Tips to Remember

If you are arrested, and the charges include Assault or Battery, you should:

  • Contact a lawyer.
  • Exercise your right to remain silent- we will speak on our behalf and advise you on any information you can share.
  • Do not discuss your case with others or share details of the events with anyone.
  • Be productive and avoid situations that may result in more legal problems.

If you have been charged with Assault or Battery in Florida, we will build a strong defense and ensure your rights are protected. Early intervention is crucial if you have been arrested for an assault or battery charge. There are two sides to every story, and sometimes more. Exercise your right to remain silent and let us do the work for you. Keep Calm and Call Us at 727-531-2926

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