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  • Evan M. Howard

Charged with Assault and Battery?


Assault and battery are two separate acts that follow closely with each other, and often can be charged as the combination.

Assault is an intentional action that makes a person fear some sort of impeding harm. Say you are in a heated argument with someone and decide you’re going to punch that person. As you start to swing you stop yourself at the last minute causing that person to flinch; thinking the punch was actually coming. That is an assault. Now, words are not enough for an assault to happen in the State of Illinois, but the “heated argument” accompanied by the threat of you swinging a punch is considered assault. The full statute can be located under 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/12-3.1.

Battery in the State of Illinois is defined as an unwanted touch that causes harm to another. There are three requirements for batter; (1) an intentional touch, (2) the touch must be “harmful or offensive,” and (3) the victim didn’t consent to the touch. Returning back to our example of the heated argument, say this time you didn’t stop yourself. Instead you continued to swing and gave that person a black eye. Regardless of if they deserved it or not, the physical touching of that other person (the punch) is now a battery. Hopefully now you can see how the two, assault and battery, can often be charged together. The full state of battery in the State of Illinois can be located at 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/12-3.

Assault and battery come in all shapes and forms, with simple assault and battery being a misdemeanor offense in Illinois while more serious acts can be charged as a felony. Some of the more serious assault and battery crimes that are charged as felonies are:

  • Assault with a deadly weapon

  • Battery with serious bodily injury (more than a bruise or scrape)

Penalties for assault and battery

A simple assault in Illinois is classified as a Class C misdemeanor with penalties being:

  • up to thirty days imprisonment, a fine up to $1500, or both

  • probation up to two years

  • community service for 30 – 120 hours

A simple battery in Illinois is classified as a Class A misdemeanor with penalties being:

  • up to one year imprisonment, a fine up to $2500, or both

  • probation for up to two years and restitution.

The more serious assault and battery charges that are felonies in Illinois could range in any number of penalties. The penalties for a Class 3 felony are:

  • two to five years imprisonment (or five to ten years if the court finds aggravating factors)

  • mandatory minimum of ten days imprisonment or 300 hours community service, when the aggravated assault was committed against a family or household member in the presence of a child

  • a fine up to $25,000

  • probation for up to thirty months or more, and restitution.

Battery with a firearm is a Class X felony and not probationable in Illinois with the penalty of:

  • six to 30 years imprisonment (or 30 to 60 years if the court finds aggravating circumstances)

  • a fine up to $25,000, and restitution.

Being charged with assault and battery as a felony or even a misdemeanor can have a devastating effect on a person’s life. These charges will follow you around for the rest of your life, and can have negative impacts on employment opportunities, loans, and even housing. Contact Howard Law for a free consultation about your record expungement or record sealment at (312) 469-0758.

Helpful Links: Assault & Battery With a Deadly Weapon

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