Criminal Law:

Assault - Battery

In most jurisdictions, an assault/battery is occurs when one person

  • 1) tries to or does physically strike another
  • 2) acts in a threatening manner to put another in fear of immediate harm.

Many states declare that a more serious or "aggravated" assault/battery occurs when one

  • 1) tries to or does cause severe injury to another
  • 2) causes injury through use of a deadly weapon.

While historically, laws treated the threat of physical injury as "assault", and the completed act of physical contact or offensive touching as "battery," many states no longer differentiate between the two.