One of the most common misdemeanor charges in the City of Chicago is an alleged violation of 720 ILCS 5/12-3(A)(1) or (A)(2) entitled battery.
People are often charged with battery after getting into a fight with patrons at a bar or pushing a security guard or bouncer outside of a club.
(A)(1) Battery vs. (A)(2) Battery
Depending on the severity of the injuries, you may be charged with (A)(1)—causes bodily harm to an individual—or (A)(2)—makes physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with an individual.
(A)(1) charges are easier to define as they often result in bruises, scratches, or other physical evidence that damaging contact was made. Examples of (A)(2) charges might include shoving, lunging, or slapping. (A)(2) actions happen when physical contact is made, but the contact does not result in bodily harm done to an individual.
There are several strategies that your attorney may use to beat the charge.
One is as simple as closely examining the criminal complaint against you. We have represented several individuals who were wrongly charged with (A)(1)—”causes bodily harm”—when the alleged victim did not suffer scratches, bruises, or broken bones.
Similarly, we have represented several people wrongly charged with (A)(2) where there was no evidence of “knowing” conduct in that the person touched/bumped/brushed against a person accidentally, incidentally, or even recklessly.
For a judge or jury to convict someone of an (A)(2) the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly made physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with the victim or complaining witness.
Self-Defense, Defense of Others, Defense of Property
Additionally, self-defense, defense of others, and defense of property arguments can be made by an attorney to defeat a battery charge, depending on the details of the case.
If you are charged with an (A)(1) or (A)(2) battery charge, it is essential to consult with an attorney. We strongly encourage you to contact Richard Fenbert at Fenbert & Associates, LLC, so that he can examine the charge against you and formulate a strategy to defend you.