Oklahoma Assault and Battery
Contrary to popular belief, there is no single crime of “assault and battery” pursuant to the Oklahoma Statutes. Both the offenses of assault and battery are separately codified in the Oklahoma Statutes as follows:
An assault is any willful and unlawful attempt or offer with force or violence to do a corporal hurt to another.
A battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.
Consequently, the deciding factor as to whether a Defendant will be charged with either assault or battery is whether any indirect or direct physical contact occurred. Often times, prosecutors will charge a Defendant with both assault and battery when the facts do not amount to such. An Oklahoma criminal defense attorney can make sure a Defendant is only charged for what actually occurred.
Affirmative Defenses for Criminal Assault and Battery in Oklahoma
The Oklahoma Legislature has allowed for the use of what is known as lawful force in the following circumstances:
- When necessarily committed by a public officer in the performance of any legal duty, or by any other person assisting such officer or acting by such officer's direction;
- When necessarily committed by any person in arresting one who has committed any felony, and delivering such person to a public officer competent to receive such person in custody;
- When committed either by the person about to be injured, or by any other person in such person's aid or defense, in preventing or attempting to prevent an offense against such person, or any trespass or other unlawful interference with real or personal property in such person's lawful possession; provided the force or violence used is not more than sufficient to prevent such offense;
- When committed by a parent or the authorized agent of any parent, or by any guardian, master or teacher, in the exercise of a lawful authority to restrain or correct such person's child, ward, apprentice or scholar, provided restraint or correction has been rendered necessary by the misconduct of such child, ward, apprentice or scholar, or by such person's refusal to obey the lawful command of such parent or authorized agent or guardian, master or teacher, and the force or violence used is reasonable in manner and moderate in degree;
- When committed by a carrier of passengers, or the authorized agents or servants of such carrier, or by any person assisting them at their request, in expelling from any carriage, railroad car, vessel or other vehicle, any passenger who refuses to obey a lawful and reasonable regulation prescribed for the conduct of passengers, if such vehicle has first been stopped and the force and violence used is not more than is sufficient to expel the offending passenger, with a reasonable regard to such passenger's personal safety; and
- When committed by any person in preventing a person who is impaired by reason of mental retardation or developmental disability as defined by Section 1430.2 of Title 10 of the Oklahoma Statutes, a mentally ill person, insane person or other person of unsound mind, including persons temporarily or partially deprived of reason, from committing an act dangerous to such person's self or to another, or enforcing such restraint as is necessary for the protection of the person or for restoration to health, during such period only as shall be necessary to obtain legal authority for the restraint or custody of the person.
Aggravated Assault and Battery in Oklahoma
Moreover, an assault and battery becomes aggravated when committed under any of the following circumstances:
- When great bodily injury is inflicted upon the person assaulted; or
- When committed by a person of robust health or strength upon one who is aged, decrepit, or incapacitated.
When dealing with aggravated assault and battery charges, the phrase "great bodily injury" means any of the following: bone fracture, protracted and obvious disfigurement, protracted loss or impairment of the function of a body part, organ or mental faculty, or substantial risk of death.
If death occurs, please review Oklahoma homicide laws.
Oklahoma Assault and Battery Punishment
A Defendant convicted of assault and battery can be subject to a wide variety on punishments depending on the specific facts of the case. Assault and battery related convictions can carry from as little as 90 days in jail and a fine to sentences requiring years of incarceration.
Domestic Violence in Oklahoma
Under Oklahoma law, domestic violence can be viewed as a battery which occurs between current or former spouses and other family members. However, the “domestic” label can also be applied to situations involving persons who are, or who have been, in a dating relationship and also those individuals who are currently living together (even roommates) and those who have lived together in the past.
Domestic abuse charges in Oklahoma are much more serious than simple assault or battery charges. Domestic crime carries with it a staunch stigma and very serious consequences. A conviction for Domestic assault and battery can lead to mandatory 52-week classes which offenders are statutorily required to attend. There can also be gun-ownership restrictions for individuals who plead to domestic violence charges.
If you or a loved one has been charged with assault and battery in Oklahoma, time is of the essence. You need an Oklahoma assault and battery attorney, and you need one right now. Call the Law Offices of Adam R. Banner, P.C., and retain an accomplished attorney ready to fight for your rights. Call us today at (405) 778-4800 for a free consultation.