In Kentucky, as in most states, battery is basically defined as intentional, non-consensual harmful or offensive contact with another, and is concerned with the rights of humans to have their bodies left alone. It is different from assault, in that battery is the actual act, whereas assault is the threat. Battery is considered both a tort and a crime, meaning there may be criminal as well as civil penalties, including punitive damages.
To qualify as battery, two criteria must be met:
1.) The Act:
The first criteria is actual physical contact with an individual’s body. It does not necessarily need to cause physical damage to be battery; in most cases, not even a bruise is necessary. Battery also includes offensive behavior to an individual, including spitting or touching against their will. Touching a person’s clothes or an item held in the hand is also considered battery.
Contact with the victim must be intended. It may be that the specific contact was intended, or it may be that the individual took actions with a reasonable expectation that some sort of contact would occur.
What To Do
Being charged with battery can lead to serious consequences, from compensation to fines and even jail time. It can leave a mark on a record that may potentially last forever. If you or a loved one has been charged with battery, contact Kentucky Criminal Defense Attorneys to find your best strategy for defense. KYCDA is a network of criminal defense attorneys around Kentucky dedicated to a full and fair defense of those charged with crimes. KYCDA has both the knowledge and the experience to handle even the toughest cases.
Battery Charges in Kentucky
Battery is listed as a sub-category of assault in Kentucky, along with aggravated assault, simple assault, intimidation and more. Assault and its categories are considered Class A criminal offenses, a class that includes the most serious felonies and subsequently have the potential of enforcing the most severe penalties. For example, a Class A felony in Kentucky is punishable by 20 years to life imprisonment. A Class B felony is punishable by 10 to 20 years in prison. Assault and its subcategories generally fall in Class B, C and D felonies, and fourth-degree assault is considered a misdemeanor. Classes depend heavily on the type of assault and the results of the assault.
Types of Battery
There are four basic types of battery. Charges depend upon what type of battery the offense is considered to be and whether there were mitigating circumstances. Charges may be increased if a weapon is used during the crime.
- Simple battery: Non-consensual harmful or insulting contact of any type. No real physical harm is necessary for the charge.
- Sexual battery: Non-consensual touching of the intimate parts of another.
- Domestic battery: This type of battery is considered domestic violence, and involves non-consensual harm or contact between persons in relationships (including family, boyfriend/girlfriend, etc.).
- Aggravated battery: This charge applies when an individual or individuals are seriously injured. This is the most severe form of battery, and as a result carries the harshest of penalties.
There are various defenses that can applied in court. One is a Kentucky statute that dates back to 1942. It essentially states that the law acknowledges that at times crimes don’t occur in a vacuum. The law allows that in civil cases, elements preceding the battery, including provocation, may be used in the defense and taken into consideration. It is vital to contact legal representation as soon as possible after the incident in order to successfully formulate an effective defense.
Kentucky Criminal Defense Attorneys
A skilled battery charge defense attorney will investigate every aspect of your case. Many factors determine the severity of a battery charge, leaving an attorney with the opportunity to explore many different avenues when building a case. For example, your defense attorney will take factors like self-defense or the accused’s mental state into account.
If you or a loved one has been accused of battery in Kentucky, Dan Carman and Attorneys can help. We have represented many clients to ensure that they are treated fairly, providing an aggressive defense to achieve the best possible result. Contact us today to set up an appointment and evaluation to learn how we can help you.