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Orange County Assault Attorney


A very common violation of the penal code is assault. However, it is very misunderstood as to its common meaning from that of what the law requires. To assault someone amounts to scaring someone that violence may or will occur. This opens many doors however when it comes to defending oneself for such a charge, since many of us have been frightened without ever being assaulted by anyone. Read below for a more in depth evaluation of this practice area.

Defense to Assault

Specifically to assault, as to whether crimes as well, if a person acts in self-defense or in the defense of someone else, they then have a defense to the charge of assault. The reason for this is because when acting in self-defense or in defense of another, one of the elements of assault is negated. As you can imagine, there are many instances where a person can be placed in the position to commit assault but for very legitimate reason. This is why the law affords one to find a defense to the charge. It should be noted, that if there was no injury to a victim, that that does not mean there was a defense. The reason for this, is because the instructions that would eventually be given to a jury do not require injury to find someone guilty of this charge.

Law of Assault

In essence, assault is an unlawful attempt with the present ability to cause a violent injury to another. (Penal Code § 240). What that means then, is that no injury needs to result from the client's actions. Some people think that assault is the same as a battery. However, when it comes to assault, the main distinction is that no injury (or even contact) is needed to commit the crime.

To be found guilty of assault, the prosecution must show that the defendant did an act that by its very nature would directly and probably result in the application of force to another person. Second the prosecution must show that the defendant acted willfully. What that means, is that when a person acts willfully when they do something willingly or on purpose. Next, the prosecution must show that when the defendant acted that they were aware of facts that would lead a reasonable person to realize that the act would directly and probably result in the application of force to them. Additionally, it must be shown that the defendant had the present ability to apply force to that other person. Finally, as it is stated above, to be found guilty of assault the defendant could not have acted in self-defense or defending someone else.