Battery or Assault cases can happen to anyone. Many people however don’t consider the implications of the charges until after they happen to them. Recently employees at a Denny’s restaurant assaulted a reporter from CBS as they were investigating a bad report on their recent restaurant health score (as reported by the Atlanta Journal and Constitution).
In the parking lot one of the employees followed the reporters out and were spouting profanities and one person was even slapping the camera.
Many people don’t realize that the crime of Simple Battery can happen to anyone, but certain circumstances are required to make the charges become greater to aggravated battery or Sexual battery or Sexual Assault. Aggravated battery is defined in O.C.G.A. 16-5-24 and involves maliciously causing bodily harm to another by depriving them of a member of their body (like an arm, finger etc), rendering that member useless or seriously disfiguring their body or a member of their body. In this case, Simple Battery may actually be applicable. Assault and battery alone are serious charges and may be more applicable than the felony charge of aggravated battery which can carry up to 20 years in prison.
The offense of Simple Battery is defined by the statute from O.C.G.A. 16-5-23 and Battery is defined in O.C.G.A. 16-5-23.1. In part, these statute states that a person commits the offense of simple battery when they intentionally make physical contact of insulting or provoking nature or causes harm to another. In this case simply unconsented touching could qualify for the offense. Slapping the camera would obviously qualify under this statute example.
What about Assault? Does it qualify in this exchange? Assault is defined under O.C.G.A. 16-5-20 which states that all that’s required is an attempt to commit a violent injury or place someone in fear of a violent injury. Seems questionable but if we review what was caught on camera it might be scary and violent looking.
What about the profanity that was being given toward the investigators? Although not directly applicable, it is possible to be charged with Terroristic Threats and Acts under O.C.G.A. 16-11-37 depending on the degree of the profanity that is being given and how it is relayed to the other person.
Of course there are facts to every case where defenses can be raised for anyone charged with the crimes of Simple Battery, Battery, Simple Assault or Aggravated assault. Each situation is different from the other and requires a evaluation of all the information in order to properly mount a defense and a effective negotiation with the prosecutors office.
Have you been arrested for Battery, Simple Battery, Aggravated Battery, Aggravated Assault? These charges can be misinterpreted from what is going on in the interaction and you may end up with charges incorrectly. It seems obvious that in some occasions these statutes are prone to abuse and overuse.
Every case is different because no two sets of facts are the same. Proper application of not just the law but also case law to your situation would take examination of the facts surrounding your case and creating a properly mounted defense for YOUR arrest.
Our office has 24 hour response lines and can answer your questions and help you. Give our team of lawyers a call at 404-445-8494. We can help you mount a proper defense for your situation.