A Virginia court seal, usually seen in a criminal defense case in Newport News and Hampton.

CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON


Assault & Battery

Assault and Battery in Virginia derives from common law.  While there is not a statute which sets forth the elements of an assault or battery, there is case law which provides a clear definition of assault and battery.

  • Assault – is “an attempt or offer, with force and violence, to do some bodily hurt to another” Parish v. Commonwealth, 56 Va. App. 324 (Va. App., 2010).
    • Assault requires an overt act and thus words alone can never be sufficient to sustain a conviction.
  •  Battery – is the “willful or unlawful touching of another” Parish v. Commonwealth, 56 Va. App. 324 (Va. App., 2010).
    • The victim does not necessarily need to be physically injured. A harmful or offensive touching will constitute a battery.

Simple Assault and Battery is a Class 1 Misdemeanor, and a person convicted of simple assault and battery can receive the following:

  • Up to twelve (12) months in jail; AND/OR
  • Up to a $2,500 fine. 

Representation by criminal defense attorney is always recommended.

VIRGINIA CODE: http://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title18.2/chapter4/section18.2-57/

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