All battery charges are considered very serious in the state of California. Individuals can end up facing high fines and a lengthy period of incarceration if they are convicted of battery. These penalties can be harsher if someone is accused of violating California Penal Code Section 243(b) & 243(c)(2): Battery On a Peace or Police Officer.
Learn more about the exact definition of battery on a peace or police officer right here. The Simmrin Law Group can help you go over the penalties for a PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) conviction and possible legal defenses.
Defining PC 243(b) and PC 243(c)(2) Charges
Individuals can be charged with battery on a peace or police officer if they:
- Purposefully Touch a Peace or Police Officer
- In a Way that is Offensive or Harmful
- Without Lawful Reason
PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) charges only apply if an individual touches a peace or police officer who is in the process of carrying out a lawful duty. Additionally, individuals should only be charged with battery on a peace or police officer if they knew or should have known that the victim was a peace or police officer.
Under the legal codes in California, all of the following individuals can be considered police or peace officers:
- Police Officers
- Sheriff’s Deputies
- CHP Officers
- Emergency Medical Technicians
Examples of Battery on a Peace or Police Officer
Make sure you understand PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) charges by going over these examples:
The police approach a man who is behaving erratically in public. They believe he is drunk in public and intend to arrest him. He grows angry when they attempt to arrest him and starts throwing punches, striking one police officer. He could be charged with battery on a peace or police officer.
Firefighters arrive at the scene of a house fire. They move in to address the fire and are stopped by an angry man who does not want them to enter the property. The man strikes one of the firefighters to stop them. He can face charges under PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2).
Understanding the Penalties for Battery on a Peace or Police Officer
The court system in Los Angeles can charge battery on a peace or police officer as a misdemeanor or a felony. Generally, if the battery did not result in any injuries, an individual will face misdemeanor charges.
The penalties for a misdemeanor charge under PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) can include:
- Fines: Up to $2,000
- Jail Time: Up to 1 Year
Individuals who are convicted of a felony for battery on a peace or police officer can be sentenced to:
- Fines: Up to $10,000
- Prison Time: Up to 3 Years
Note that, depending on the exact circumstances, individuals can face additional charges related to PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2). These charges can include:
- California Penal Code Section 148(a): Resisting Arrest
- California Penal Code Section 243(d): Battery Causing Serious Bodily Injury
A professional criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles can help individuals deal with both misdemeanor and felony violations of PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2). A lawyer can also help individuals handle any other criminal charges they are facing.
Building a Defense for Battery on a Peace or Police Officer
Beating an accusation of battery on a peace or police officer can be incredibly difficult. The court system may be predisposed to favor a police or peace officer. Working with a professional criminal defense lawyer can increase the odds that PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) charges can be resolved successfully.
A criminal defense lawyer may be able to utilize the following arguments:
You Did Not Mean to Harm a Peace or Police Officer
Accidents happen. Individuals should only be convicted of battery on a peace or police officer if they intentionally tried to cause harm. Proving that any injury was accidental can be difficult if you do not have professional help.
You Were Only Trying to Protect Yourself
Sometimes, police and peace officers utilize excessive force as they carry out their duties. Police officers also sometimes make unlawful arrests. Individuals are allowed to defend themselves in these situations.
You Were Falsely Accused
Police and peace officers sometimes accuse individuals of battery without cause. This defense can be very complicated to prove to the satisfaction of the court.
Get Professional Help Handling Charges for Battery on a Peace or Police Officer
Individuals who are charged under California Penal Code Section 243(b) & 243(c)(2): Battery On a Peace or Police Officer can end up facing harsh legal consequences. The first step for addressing a PC 243(b) and 243(c)(2) charge should be contacting a legal professional. You can reach the Simmrin Law Group by calling (310) 896-2723 or filling out our online contact form.
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