Labor Day & Simple Battery Charges, Domestic Violence or Aggravated Assault Arrest
By Michael D. Barber, Georgia Lawyer specializing in DUI, Drug Charges & Criminal Defense
Don’t let your Labor Day weekend end with simple battery charges, domestic violence or aggravated assault arrest.
Police will come to your house when called and they rely on various reasons to support their visit. One scenario usually starts with a call involving a recent fight between two people. It can start at either a labor day weekend gathering, a simple meal or just standing around celebrating at any party. Then two individuals have a disagreement.
Calling the police to resolve the dispute is the fastest way to bring them to your door, BUT we need to remember if they arrive on scene, someone is going to jail. That is their response for a call involving simple battery and/or Domestic Violence.
Arguments sometimes result in officers arriving at your house to “break up” a fight. So much can happen in the short time with the officers onsite. So much MORE can happen after they arrive.
Another popular time for law enforcement to use these types of “arrival excuses” is over SPECIAL EVENTS such as the University of Georgia v. Oregon Ducks Football game for September 3, 2022 or the Atlanta United v. the Portland Timbers on September 4, 2022. Its important to remember that you can either be at these games here in Atlanta OR watching them at a local bar or even your own house police will still be answering and responding to fights, arguments and altercations that people call them to “break up” or stop.
These events can happen from visiting a game day party at either a bar or a friends house or just being at home. One thing that many people don’t understand is why calling the officers to break up a fight results in an arrest.
Officers will arrive at a location if they are called to stop a fight, but their reaction usually results in someone getting arrested, regardless of the facts of the case. The officers will err on the side of caution rather than risking someone getting battered, assaulted or even worse, severely injured if they did nothing.
It’s also important to review what the officers will qualify as a Simple Battery, Domestic Violence, and Aggravated Assault and we should also look at cruelty to children as that pops up frequently, as well.
Simple Battery – What you need to know
Let’s start with the basics and work our way up to particularization of the charges in this situation. Many people don’t realize that the crime of Simple Battery can happen to anyone, including police officers. 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.
All that is required to receive the additional charge for Domestic Violence is that you live with the person with whom you are fighting. Generally if the officers see that fact, you can also get a domestic violence charge.
Simple Battery and Domestic Violence Charges
During these events, however, if the child views or is in the same room as what happens you can also be charged with cruelty to children in the third degree. O.C.G.A. 16-5-70 contains the information explaining how someone can be charged for Cruelty to children.
One of the subsections of that statute states that if a child witnesses a battery or family violence battery, then the person who is causing the battery to occur can be charged with cruelty to children in the third degree. If the danger and situation that the child was placed into by these events is dangerous enough, as determined by investigators, then the Department of Family and Children Services (DFCS) may become involved and he may also be additionally charged under the child abuse statutes O.C.G.A. Title 19 chapter 15.
This type of investigation would be mandated by the Georgia Office of the Child Advocate (who would report to DFCS). Of course there are facts to every case where defenses can be raised for anyone charged with the crimes of Simple Battery or Battery. O.C.G.A. 16-5-23 subsection (f) we would see the following:
If the offense of battery is committed between past or present spouses, persons who are parents of the same child, parents and children, stepparents and stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or other persons living or formerly living in the same household, then such offense shall constitute the offense of family violence battery.
This is a liberal construction and shows that all that is required at a minimum is that you get into a physical altercation with someone with whom you are living. 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.
Simple Battery and Aggravated Assault Charges
Moving forward, now let’s look at how simple battery charges can turn into Aggravated Assault. Aggravated Assault is defined under O.C.G.A. 16-5-21 which states that a person commits the offense when he or she assaults with the intent to murder rape or rob with a deadly object that is likely to do serious bodily injury.
This charge alone can carry from 1-20 years in prison and is mostly charged as a felony. This type of crime is what we refer to as an intent crime. This means that apart from Battery, if contact is made, and intent is involved battery can turn into aggravated assault quickly.
Have you been arrested for Aggravated Assault, Simple Assault, Battery, Simple Battery, Child Cruelty or Child Abuse?
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.