Assault and battery, while often paired together, are two different criminal charges. The main difference is that battery requires an intentional physical act and injury, while assault requires an imminent threat of physical harm, but no physical contact.
Assault and battery are covered under three sections of the Indiana Criminal Code.
- Indiana Code Sec. 35-45-2-1: Generally, intimidation/threat is classified as a class A misdemeanor, that could result in up to $5,000 in fines and up to one year in jail. However, an intimidation/threat charge can be upgraded to a Level 6 felony if the threat is made toward a police officer or another person specified by the statute.
- Indiana Code Sec. 35-42-2-2: Criminal recklessness is mostly considered a Class B misdemeanor, which can result in up to $1,000 in fines and 180 days in jail. However, criminal recklessness can be classified as a Level 5 or Level 6 felony if a deadly weapon is involved.
- Indiana Code Sec. 35-42-2: Typically, criminal battery is classified as a Class A misdemeanor, resulting in up to one year in jail and $5,000 in fines, or Class B misdemeanor, resulting in up to 180 days in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. However, battery can also be a Level 6 felony in more serious cases.
Defending against assault and battery charges with self-defense
Self-defense, or the right to protect yourself or others from violence, is commonly used to defend against assault and battery charges. In Indiana, self-defense can be used as a valid justification for attacking or injuring someone else, if:
- Reasonable force is used.
- You reasonably believed you or someone else was at risk for immediate physical harm.
If you are facing assault and/or battery charges in Indiana, you may be concerned about what lies ahead. A criminal defense attorney at Kammen & Moudy can help with your defense strategy and guide you through this difficult time.