1. In criminal law, this is a physical act that results in harmful or offensive contact with another person without that person's consent.
2. In tort law, the intentional causation of harmful or offensive contact with another's person without that person's consent.
In an act of physical violence by one person against another, "assault" is usually paired with battery. In an act of physical violence, assault refers to the act which causes the victim to apprehend imminent physical harm, while battery refers to the actual act causing the physical harm.
Criminal law statutes will sometimes merge the two terms of "assault" and "battery" into the one crime of "assault."
Prima Facie Case
The prima facie case for battery contains 4 components:
- The defendant acts
- The defendant intends to cause contact with the victim
- The defendant's contact with the victim is harmful or offensive
- The defendant's contact causes the victim to suffer a contact that is harmful or offensive