Understanding Simple Battery in Miami, Florida
In the state of Florida, simple battery is a misdemeanor of the first degree, as simple battery does not involve the use of aggravating factors, such as weapons, serious bodily injury, or domestic violence. Under Section 784.03, Florida Statutes, simple battery is defined as:
- The actual and intentional touching or striking of another individual against the will of that individual; or
- Intentionally causing bodily harm to another individual.
Under Section 775.082, Florida Statutes, and Section 775.083 the first offense of simple battery is a first degree misdemeanor, and is punishable by up to – but no more than – one year in prison, and a $1,000 fine.
In order for a charge of simple battery to be upheld in Miami, Florida, the victim must prove that the defendant meant to strike the other person, or willfully engaged in conduct that the defendant knew would lead to touching or striking. Therefore, should an individual accidentally touch or strike another individual, and the victim cannot prove that the blow was meant for him or her, then said victim has insufficient evidence to establish a case of simple battery. Oftentimes, in a case of simple battery, it is up to the judge and jury to examine the circumstantial evidence and determine whether or not the physical contact was intentional or accidental.
Injury Not Required
In a simple battery case in Miami, Florida, it is not necessary for the victim to have sustained any injuries; rather, the willful touching of another individual against his or her will is enough to convict an individual of committing simple battery against the alleged victim. Furthermore, because simple battery hinges on the willful touching or striking of another individual without their consent, the existence and extent of injury is entirely irrelevant.
Direct Contact Not Required
Furthermore, direct contact is not required for a simple battery conviction in Miami, Florida. If an individual were to intentionally throw an item at the alleged victim – no matter how large or how small – then the victim could charge the aggressor with and even win a case of simple battery.
Defenses to Simple Battery
Because simple battery requires little to no physical evidence of an altercation, a simple battery case really hinges on each party’s story and possible motives. If you have been charged with simple battery, our Miami assault and battery lawyers will use your story and build a case around one of the following defenses:
- Self defense;
- Defense of others;
- Defense of property;
- Mutual combat;
- Accidental touching;
- Justifiable use of force under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law;
- Touching not aimed at making contact;
- Lack of intent; or
- Lack of evidence.
One of your best defenses against simple battery is mutual combat or consent. Because a simple battery conviction hinges on the touching or striking of an individual against their will, if you can prove that the fight was mutual, you can eliminate the “against their will” factor. Mutual combat is recognized as a battery defense as it is contingent upon the fact that both parties chose to engage in a physical altercation, and therefore, understood that their engagement in such conduct would result in being touched or struck by the other individual. In the event of mutual combat, both parties would be held liable.
Consult a Miami Assault and Battery Lawyer
At The Baez Law Firm, our assault and battery lawyers can build an aggressive defense against any assault charges brought against you. Whether you are facing simple battery charges or aggravated assault and battery charges, our criminal defense lawyers will utilize all available resources to fully investigate the situation that lead to the assault, and to build a strong defense. If you have been charged with assault and battery in Miami or Orlando Florida, contact our criminal defense firm at 800-588-BAEZ.