There are many reasons why one may face assault and battery charges. If you are in a situation where you are facing this type of charge, you likely have a lot of questions. The question at the top of your mind might be, “what possible defenses are there?”
South Carolina defines assault and battery as inflicting, or attempting to inflict bodily injury to another person. This post will look at three frequently used defenses to these charges.
Defense of self
An individual can use self-defense as a defense to an assault case when the individual in question (the defendant) can justify that they had no other options and were acting to protect themselves. This defense works best when the defendant only used force that was reasonable according to the situation. For example, if someone was threatening to beat them up, it would not be reasonable to shoot them.
Defense of another
If the defendant can prove they were defending another person when they committed the assault, it may be successful. If an individual was attacking another, the defendant has the right to come to the attacked individual’s aid by using force against the attacker. The reasonable force rule applies here as well.
Defense of property
A defendant may claim that they were protecting their property when the assault occurred. For example, if an individual was attacking the defendant’s car or dog, the use of force against the attacker may be justified.
Facing assault and battery charges can be stressful, but there are defenses to the allegations.