Assault, Battery, and Self-Defence

WHAT IS ASSAULT?
When you think of the word assault you may think of physical violence.
But this isn’t actually the definition of an assault.
Instead, making someone fear violence through the use of words and threatening behaviour is an assault.
An example: An assault could be a threat or it could be shouting at another person so that the other person feels scared that you may hurt them.
WHAT IS BATTERY?
Battery is using force against someone else, which results in unwanted harmful, offensive or sexual contact.
An example: Any unwanted touching such as hitting, kicking or even touching someone repeatedly when they have asked you to stop, even if you aren’t physically hurting them can be a battery.
WHEN IS IT SELF-DEFENCE?
Using force on someone, for example hitting them, will not always be a criminal offence.
If you hit someone because you are protecting yourself then it may be described as self-defence rather than as a battery.
An example: You may hit someone to stop them from hitting you or you may threaten to hit someone, hoping that this will make them go away and stop scaring you. In these circumstances, what you have done will be seen as self-defence.
It will not be self-defence though if you have deliberately caused the situation.
An example: This means that if you go and start a fight or are deliberately aggressive to someone and then they start to hurt you by shouting and scaring you or by using violence against you, your response, for example to hit back, will not be self-defence. This is because you have started the situation.
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ELEANOR HAIDON

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