Criminal battery—or assault causing bodily harm—is a serious offence in Calgary. Battery differs slightly from the crime of assault. While a battery involves an unlawful harmful or offensive touching, an assault occurs when a person creates a reasonable apprehension of imminent contact upon another.
If the Crown prosecutor charges you with battery, you will likely be facing some harsh penalties, including the possibility of jail time. The experienced Calgary criminal defence lawyers at Bourdon Defence can review your case and represent you throughout all of your criminal proceedings.
The Burden of Proof for Battery
In a battery case, the Crown prosecutor bringing the criminal charge against you must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that you committed the crime in question. Specifically, the prosecutor must demonstrate that an unlawful harmful or offensive touching occurred, and that you intentionally brought about that harmful or offensive touching.
Defending a Battery Charge at Trial
During a criminal battery trial, after the Crown prosecutor puts on his or her case, the defence will have an opportunity to introduce evidence. There are several available legal defences to the crime of battery. One defence may be that the Crown prosecutor failed to establish all of the legal elements for a battery conviction in the first place. In that instance, the Calgary criminal defence lawyer may argue for a complete dismissal of the battery charge. Other legal defences to a battery charge may also be available. Those potential defences include the following:
- Mistake - The accused may allege that he or she thought a battery was coming and consequently used force as a means of self-protection, based upon his or her own testimony, as well as witness testimony.
- Self-defense - The accused could argue self-defence to a battery charge in the event he or she believed that such force was necessary for self-protection—or to protect someone else. When it comes to self-defence, however, the accused may only use a proportionate amount of force against someone else.
- Consent - The prosecutor should not secure a conviction of battering another person if that other person authorized the harmful or offensive touching.
- Coercion or duress - If someone coerced the accused to commit the battery by threatening harm to the accused (or to someone else), the touching may be justifiable.
- Mistaken identity - If the accused can demonstrate that a witness mistakenly identified him or her—or that someone else actually committed the battery—that may be a defence to the crime.
Call a Calgary Battery Defence Lawyer Today
In addition to representing the accused in the courtroom and presenting a defence on the accused’s behalf, a Calgary criminal defence lawyer can also represent the accused at a sentencing hearing and argue before a judge for a charge reduction or lighter penalty. If you are currently facing a Calgary battery charge, the criminal defence lawyers at Bourdon Defence can outline all of your legal options. To schedule a free legal consultation and case evaluation with a Calgary battery defence lawyer, you should call us today at (403) 474-4143, or contact us online.