Assault and Battery

Talk to a lawyer NOW if you’re facing Assault and Battery Charges in North Carolina


A fight that gets out of control or a false accusation of assault and battery could develop into a criminal situation that follows you for years to come. At Powers Landreth, our lawyers know what it’s like for those who have been accused and we use that experience to develop a defense strategy and take action immediately for charges involving assault and battery in North Carolina.

Being accused of assault and battery can be confusing or overwhelming. It makes sense to immediately talk to a criminal defense lawyer.

Experienced courtroom lawyers help. There are several different kinds of misdemeanor assault and battery crimes in North Carolina. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Assault and battery; typically involving someone else sustaining physical injuries.
  • Assault or the attempt to commit assault and battery; showing a force indicating that such an act is imminent.
  • Affray: a fight between two or more individuals in a public place that is designed to scare others.


No matter how it started or ended, you you should seek legal advice and guidance.  Walking through the basics of the allegations and gathering evidence to help protect your interests are both crucial early on while the facts of the case are still fresh in your mind. Your lawyer may be able to identify mistakes made by the police that could result in reduced or dropped charges, but you must take action quickly.

Worrying about your future when you’ve been accused of assault is natural. The police are not necessarily looking out for you and your best interests.  Their job is to prosecute people they believe guilty of criminal charges.

Understanding Simple Assault, Assault and Battery and Affray

Assault and battery can be categorized in different ways.  Sometimes the charges are considered misdemeanors. Sometimes they’re charged as felonies. A lot depends on the nature and the circumstances of what happened.

  • Who was hurt?
  • How bad were the injuries?
  • Were there any special circumstances?
  • Are there any defenses such as self-defense?
  • What level of force was used?
  • Was the force used both necessary and legally proper?


Serious Injury

A felony charge may apply if an assault or battery results in serious injury.

Using A Deadly Weapon

Any item that might be used to kill someone can lead to an assault with a deadly weapon charge as a class A-1 misdemeanor. Some of the most common types of weapons used in these charges are knives and guns, but they’re not just limited to that.

Domestic Violence

Another class A-1 assault and battery misdemeanor allegation is domestic violence. This occurs when an assault happens in front of a minor child and the minor must have been in a place to observe their assault. The term personal relationship is a crucial component of these allegations. This is defined to include children, spouses, former spouses, individuals living together as a family and grandchildren.

Sexual Battery

The class A-1 misdemeanor sexual battery refers to any physical contact or sexual contact carried out for sexual purposes by force and against the victim’s will. This also refers to any contact of a sexual nature with a victim who is physically helpless, incapacitated or mentally disabled.

Offenses Against Particular Victims

An offense can be elevated from the basic status to more serious charges, warranting punishment as a class A-1 misdemeanor if the victim is:

  • A woman and children under the age of 12.
  • A private, public or charter school employee or volunteer on school property while transporting children to/from a school or at a school event.
  • Public transit operators, state officers or employees, private and campus security officers, if they are acting in their employment and official capacity.

Sports Officials

Assaulting any sports official during the course of a sports event is a class 1 misdemeanor in North Carolina. Sports officials include umpires, referees and coaches and a game is any organized sporting event including little league and professional sports.

Punishments for Misdemeanors, Assault and Battery Charges

Class A-1 misdemeanors are typically punished by supervised probation, a jail sentence of up to 60 days or probation. A judge can additionally impose a fine at his or her discretion. The sentence can be increased up to 150 days of prison time if there are prior convictions. A class 1 misdemeanor is punished by between 1 and 45 days in jail and probation.

An assault conviction could lead to time in jail or probation depending on the circumstances of your case, but regardless of the type of charges you are facing, you should seek legal help from a criminal defense attorney.

Modified Transcript of Video "Assault and Battery" for the Hearing Impaired Criminal Defense Lawyer Legal Help in North Carolina

Modified Transcript of “Assault and Battery Charges in North Carolina” for the Hearing Impaired

Assault and battery are terms that come from the common law in North Carolina, and that’s the law that everyone knew, when we had a king and we were a colony, it came over from England. In North Carolina, we still acknowledge common law concepts of assault and battery, both as criminal offenses and as torts, meaning something you may sue for, for money damages in civil court. What we’re
talking about are criminal charges in North or South Carolina that involve the use of force. The use of force can be a touching of a person in an unwelcome manner. It could be punching someone in the mouth. It can be hitting or striking somebody with a weapon.

Assault cases start at very, very minor. Sometimes we see an assault where we call it an affray or a minor tussle, where people are pushing and shoving one another. You might imagine that could include threats of physical harm and even additional charges for something lawyers refer to as “Communicating Threats.”

We also see cases where there are two people in a bar, they’ve had too much to drink, and they get into a voluntary fight. It cab escalate
from there. If you are a male over the age of 18, 18 or over, in North Carolina,and you assault a female, that has an enhanced or more serious level of sentencing.  That means the consequences and punishments can be severe and therefore those types of charges tend to be more serious.

In North Carolina, we have different levels of punishments. Part of hiring a lawyer and one of the good reasons for hiring a lawyer is for us to explain to you the different types of the charges, your options, the consequences and best and worst-case-scenarios. You may have a misdemeanor assault, which is serious, and then you may have another type of misdemeanor, which would be assault on a female, which is much more serious.

We have different levels of misdemeanor offenses in in North Carolina, from A-1 or Aggravated Misdemeanors down to Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3 misdemeanors.  That is different than felony charges.

One type of assault may be a lower level, and a misdemeanor assault on a female is the highest level there is, right below a felony. If you assault a child, if you assault a police officer, if you assault a person that is in a wheelchair or has some other form of a disability, those are some of the most serious type of misdemeanors we see in court.

If you use a weapon of some sort, assault with a deadly weapon, you use a stick, brass knuckles, sometimes those assaults are so serious in nature that they get elevated to the level of felony. We see assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury, whatever the serious injury may be.

Or, we see assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious bodily injury. You hear these acronyms, AWDWIKISI or AWDWISI, assault with a deadly weapon, intent to kill, inflicting serious injury.

Some assaults go to level that someone dies. It could be manslaughter. Or, it goes up to the level of murder, where, even if there’s some level of mutuality in a fight and someone dies, you could be looking at a felony.

When it comes to the terms Assault and Battery, we kind of use the terms interchangeably. There is
a technical legal difference.

There are domestic type of batteries, domestic type of assaults. Basically, it’s when you have put your hands on someone when you

Another example of battery, we have sexual batteries, where there are allegation of a an unlawful touching of a sexual nature. We see these in bar cases, where someone has had too much to drink and you put your hands on someone when you’re not supposed to.

Gracious, it’s complicated. There are a lot of different options.

As you may now understand, it can go from very, very minor to very, very serious, depending on the nature and the circumstances of the case.

Call us. Exercise your right to remain silent. If there’s an investigation going on, it would probably be better if you talk to a lawyer before you talk to anyone else. If you have a friend or family member in jail in one of these type of deals, if you can bond them out, that’s great.  But if that’s not possible or if  want to find out more information about how to bond someone out or how long they’ll be in jail or what probable cause is or what a bond hearing is, give us a call.

Our consultation is free. We don’t charge you anything to talk to us. We only send you a bill if you say you want our legal help and you’re going to retain us.

If you have an assault and battery, thank you for watching this video. I hope you call us. But you may also want to take a look at our other library of videos and see how they’re interrelated. This website has a lot of information regarding
different statutes, different types of cases.

If there’s a specific question, like how does court work, or do I have to go to court, or how do I even ask for a public
defender, or what do I say? Look at our website. Look at our blog. Then,
ultimately, just give us a ring.

You can e-mail me, bill@342help.com or  you can call me at (704)-342- HELP. That’s what we do, we
help people.

(704)-342- 4357. Thank you for watching this video. I hope that it provided some basic background information. Look forward to hearing from you. Talk to you soon.

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