Assault and Battery

Resisting an officer – with or without violence – is a common arrest, especially to those not originally the subject of the original investigation.


Assault and Battery

When it comes to an assault or a battery case, there is usually a lot more to the story than what is included in the police report.

While a prosecutor, Stephen M. Bernhardt recalls many cases where arrests were made, yet afterwards, everyone agreed that the night simply got out of hand and/or that the circumstances were embellished.

However, these offenses – especially domestic violence-related charges – are serious and should be treated as such. The State Attorney’s Office certainly takes these cases seriously.

Bernhardt Riley will look beyond the police report and assess the entire situation to best defend your case.

Applicable Florida Statutes below:

The legal difference between assault and battery in Florida is the unlawful contact made with the other person. In other words, the threat of violence could constitute an assault, but it would not rise to the level of battery unless unwanted contact occurred.

Florida Statute 784.03 – Battery; Felony Battery

The offense of battery occurs when a person:

  • Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other [(1)(a)]
  • Intentionally causes bodily harm to another person [(1)]
  • Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who commits battery commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. (b) 082 or s. 775.083.
  • A person who has one prior conviction for battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery and who commits any second or subsequent battery commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. (2) 082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. For purposes of this subsection, “conviction” means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or a trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or a plea of nolo contendere is entered.

Florida Statute 784.011 – Assault

An (1) “assault” is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.

Whoever commits an assault shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in statutes (2) 775.082 or s.** 775.083**.