Assault And Battery In Wisconsin
If Physical Contact Is Made, It’s Battery, Not Assault
Assault and battery are so often lumped together in Wisconsin that many people think they are the same crime. They aren’t; they are two separate and distinct criminal charges but they are both often used to describe the crime of battery.
Under Wisconsin law, battery is defined as using force against someone with the intent to injure them, whereas assault is the threat of bodily harm; no actual physical contact is required.
Types Of Battery
Battery is a serious charge. It is considered a criminal offense in Wisconsin. You can be charged with battery if you intentionally cause injury to another person, including a fetus. Depending on the circumstances, you may be charged with a “misdemeanor battery” or a “felony battery.”
A misdemeanor battery charge may be leveled when you intentionally cause bodily harm to another person. Bodily harm is considered any physical injury, illness, or impairment. You can be charged with battery for pushing, scuffling, spitting, or throwing something at someone.
When the battery causes serious bodily harm, it is considered a felony battery. But there are two different types of felony battery charges, depending on the circumstances. “Substantial battery” exists when there is substantial bodily harm. Examples of substantial harm include: broken teeth or bones, concussions, cuts requiring stitches or staples, or anything that affect the senses. The second type of felony charge is “aggravated battery,” where there is great bodily harm. Great bodily harm causes long-term consequences including a risk of death, disfigurement, loss of a limb, or permanent impairment.
Misdemeanor And Felony Penalties
Misdemeanor battery is considered a Class A misdemeanor. Anyone found guilty of misdemeanor battery could face as much as 9 months in jail and fines of up to $10,000. If a weapon was used or there was a threat to use a weapon, prison sentences can be as long as 15 months.
Felonies are much more serious charges than misdemeanors. As a result, the fines and penalties are significantly higher. Due to the nature of felony crimes, penalties vary widely and may be classified differently. A felony battery may be classified as a Class E, a Class H, or a Class I felony depending on the injury caused to another. Jail time ranges from 3 and a half to 15 years in prison and fines range from $10,000 – $50,000.
Defend Yourself Against Battery Charges With Help From Criminal Attorneys In Madison, WI
Whether you are charged with a misdemeanor or a felony depends on the particulars of your case, what happened to the alleged victim, and what your intentions were at the time of the incident. But in any case, a battery charge is a serious situation. In addition to fines and penalties, you will have a criminal record.
If you have been charged with battery, you need help from the Eisenberg Law Offices criminal attorneys in Madison, WI. Such cases can be complex, requiring an attorney who is skilled in research and fact-checking as well as criminal law and trial experience. Your Eisenberg Law attorney will thoroughly investigate the facts of the case to build a strong defense and fight for your rights.