Assault is a serious crime under Illinois law—and it’s one that carries serious penalties.
Many people use assault and battery interchangeably, but they’re actually separate crimes. Each carries its own set of penalties under Illinois law.
What is Assault in Illinois?
Under Illinois law, assault is intentionally placing another individual in apprehension of a battery. Assault only refers to a physical threat of violence.
A common example of assault is throwing a punch but missing the target. The person you attempted to punch was under the reasonable apprehension of a battery; he or she thought you were going to hit them.
The state can charge you with assault, even if you never landed a punch or caused any harm.
The law that governs assault in Illinois is 720 ILCS 5/12-1, which says, “A person commits an assault when, without lawful authority, he or she knowingly engages in conduct which places another in reasonable apprehension of receiving a battery.”
What is Battery in Illinois?
Battery can be a misdemeanor or a felony; it depends on the severity of the battery.
Misdemeanor battery occurs when someone intentionally causes physical harm to another person, or when one person makes contact of an insulting or provoking nature without causing harm.
A common example of misdemeanor battery is punching someone without causing serious injury; another is spitting on someone else. Under Illinois law, it’s considered “simple” battery, and it’s a misdemeanor that carries a penalty of up to 1 year in the county jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
The law that governs simple battery in Illinois is 720 ILCS 5/12-3, which says, “A person commits battery if he or she knowingly without legal justification by any means (1) causes bodily harm to an individual or (2) makes physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with an individual.”
Felony battery, which is commonly called aggravated battery, occurs when the victim’s injuries are severe or permanent. Aggravated battery can result in a prison sentence.
The law that governs aggravated battery in Illinois is 720 ILCS 5/12-3.05, which says, “A person commits aggravated battery when, in committing a battery, other than by the discharge of a firearm, he or she knowingly… causes great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement.” A battery that involves a child under the age of 13, an adult aged 60 or over, or someone who has a severe or profound intellectual disability is also considered an aggravated battery.
Why You Need a Chicago Assault and Battery Defense Lawyer
If you’re accused of assault or battery—or both—in Chicago, Skokie, Schaumburg or Rolling Meadows, it’s incredibly important that you talk to a criminal defense attorney immediately.
You don’t have the luxury of time on your side. The sooner you get in touch with a Chicago assault and battery lawyer, the sooner he can begin building a strategic defense that preserves your constitutional rights and ensures that you get the best possible outcome.
Call us at 847-920-4540 for your free assault and battery case review immediately. We can help you—so call us now.