Assault and battery are two distinct yet often interconnected criminal offenses in Oklahoma. The consequences can range from moderate fines and probation to years in jail for felony violations.
It is possible to face these charges separately. However, assault and battery cases can overlap, and defendants must face both charges at the same time.
Assault and battery charges
Under Oklahoma law, assault refers to the intentional creation of a reasonable fear of imminent harm or offensive contact with another person. Physical contact is not necessary for an assault charge. The threat or attempt of harm is sufficient.
Battery involves actual physical contact. It is the intentional and unlawful use of force against another person. This can include any unwanted touching, striking or causing bodily harm to someone else. Battery requires physical contact, whether it causes injury or not.
Punishment after conviction
The penalties for assault and battery in Oklahoma vary widely based on the severity of the offense and the circumstances surrounding the incident. Simple assault is generally considered a misdemeanor. Penalties may include fines as high as $500 and up to a month in jail.
Battery charges often carry more severe consequences, especially if the act results in significant injury or involves weapons. Depending on the severity, a battery charge can be a misdemeanor or a felony. A misdemeanor battery conviction might result in up to one year in jail.
Certain circumstances, such as committing battery against a protected class of individuals like police officers or emergency personnel, can lead to enhanced penalties. If someone commits assault and battery together, the charges can compound, resulting in more serious legal repercussions. Charges of aggravated assault and battery can lead to a sentence of five years. A felony conviction of assault and battery involving a deadly weapon may result in ten years in prison.
Understanding the nuances of assault and battery charges in Oklahoma is important for anyone facing these allegations.