Aggravated Battery or Aggravated Assault

What is the difference between an assault and a battery? Why was I charged with an Aggravated Battery, what does Aggravated Battery or Aggravated Assault mean?

The difference between an assault and battery is that an assault generally does not involve any contact but involves a threat by either word or act. An assault is an unlawful threat do violence to another person while having the ability to do so, and creating a well-founded fear in the other person that violence is about to take place. Those are legal terms for someone saying that you threatened them and they told the police that they believed that you were going to act on the threat.

An ‘aggravated’ assault is a threat with a deadly weapon or with a motor vehicle. This is often where you have been accused of pointing a gun at someone or threatening someone with a knife.

A deadly weapon can be a gun, a knife, or virtually anything which could cause serious injury. Often times an issue in aggravated assault an a defense to aggravated Assault is the so-called “weapon” and whether it is a deadly weapon or not. Another issue and potential defense to the charge of Aggravated Assault which should be explored is whether the person had the apparent ability to carry out the threat. Were they too far away to do anything or were they not serious?

Aggravated assault is a third-degree felony carrying a maximum of of a five-year prison sentence. However, aggravated assault with a firearm can carry a minimum mandatory 3 year prison sentence. Simple assault is a second-degree misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of 60 days in the County jail.

Aggravated Battery is more serious than Aggravated Assault and occurs when someone touches or strikes someone against their will and causes serious bodily injury. In other words you are charged with attacking someone and causing serious injury. If the accuser claims that you intentionally caused the serious injury, as opposed to not meaning to seriously hurt them, then the minimum sentencing score on the Florida Sentencing Code is more severe. Both types of Aggravated Battery are second degree felonies carrying up to 15 years in prison.

Read more on Aggravated Battery or Aggravated Assault

Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer


An assault on a law enforcement officer or first responder is a misdemeanor of the first degree. If it is an aggravated assault it becomes a felony of the third degree and carries a minimum prison term of three years. However, a battery on a law enforcement officer or first responder is a felony of the third degree. If it is an aggravated battery it becomes a felony of the first degree carrying a minimum prison term of five years and a maximum of 30 years..

Statutes are also in effect for battery on specific persons such as a code inspector, healthcare service person, battery on the elderly (a person 65 years or older), and a detention officer or probation officer.

Although the nature of these charges is very serious, there are often defenses or mitigators which open up options, strategies, and alternatives for you. Many charges can be altered, reduced, dismissed or successfully defended.

Domestic Battery

Florida Statute 741.28 defines domestic violence as any assault, battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravating stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of a family or household member by another who is or has resided in the same dwelling unit.

Family or household members can include spouses, and even former spouses, as well as adults related by blood or marriage. Persons who are living together may also qualify as domestic.

Battery is defined as actually and intentionally touching her striking another person against their will or intentionally causing bodily harm to another person. A battery can be a felony if there is a serious injury or a previous simple battery conviction

A domestic battery can also be a felony if it is alleged that the person committed domestic violence by strangulation.

Quite often charges of false imprisonment were tampering with a witness a company a charge of domestic battery. Often there is an allegation that someone is held in a location against their will or that a person has taken their means of communication, such as a telephone, away from them, thus tampering with their ability to contact the authorities.

A domestic violence injunction is something that is sought in civil court and is not by itself a criminal charge. However, if someone has an injunction against them and violates it, this can become a criminal charge of violation of an injunction, and a person can be jailed for this. If a person is served with a domestic violence injunction, they have a right to defend that before a judge. Notice will be sent. You should seek the assistance and advice of an experienced domestic violence defense attorney or Stalking defense attorney. Whatever occurs at an injunction hearing may be used in the prosecution of a criminal charge.

Battery on a Pregnant Female


Battery on the Elderly






You should always contact an experienced Pinellas County criminal and aggravated battery defense attorney and aggravated assault defense attorney for a consultation. Please review Larry Sandefer’s qualifications and extensive experience here. Then, call and talk on the phone or come in. There is no charge and all consultations are confidential.

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Larry Sandefer – Clearwater Aggravated Battery Defense Attorney

  • Over 30 Years Courtroom Experience
  • Former Lead Trial Lawyer & Division Director
  • Over 5000 Criminal Cases Handled
  • Hundreds of Jury Trials as sole or lead counsel