Battery on a Peace / Police Officer
California Penal Code 243(b) & 243(c) PC

California criminal law creates a special category of the crime of California battery when it is committed against a peace officer or member of another protected profession.1

Specifically, Penal Code 243(b) & 243(c) PC define the crime of “battery on a peace / police officer.” You commit this crime if:

  1. You willfully and unlawfully touch someone in a harmful or offensive manner;
  2. The “victim” is a peace officer or other protected person engaged in the performance of his/her duties; and
  3. When you committed the battery, you knew or reasonably should have known that s/he was a peace officer or other protected person performing his/her duties.2

In addition to peace / police officers, the protected persons covered by California's “battery on a peace officer” law include:

  • Custodial officers,
  • Firefighters,
  • Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) or paramedics,
  • Process servers,
  • Employees of a probation department, and
  • Doctors and nurses providing emergency medical care.3
28001_policevest
California law punishes battery more harshly when it is allegedly committed against a police officer.

Examples

Here are several examples of situations that could give rise to “battery against a police officer” charges:

  • While a police officer is trying to arrest a drunken woman for Penal Code 415 disturbing the peace, she stomps on his foot and scratches his arm.
  • During a protest against police misconduct, a man throws a rock at a police officer who is patrolling the protest site.
  • A mentally ill parolee punches and kicks his parole officer during a routine meeting.

Penalties

Battery on a peace / police officer is typically a misdemeanor in California law. The potential penalties are up to one (1) year in county jail, and/or a fine of up to two thousand dollars ($2,000).4

But if the battery causes an injury requiring medical treatment, then this crime becomes a wobbler (that is, a crime that may be charged as a misdemeanor or a California felony).

If it is charged as a felony, battery on a peace officer carries a potential sentence of sixteen (16) months, two (2) or three (3) years in county jail, and/or a fine of up to ten thousand dollars ($10,000).5

Legal defenses

California criminal law takes allegations of crimes against police officers seriously.

Police_badge
Our criminal defense attorneys are familiar with the most effective legal defenses against "battery on a peace officer" charges.

But all is not lost if you are charged with battery on a peace / police officer. An experienced California criminal defense attorney can help you identify promising legal defenses to fight these charges. These may include:

  • You acted in self-defense or defense of someone else;
  • You did not act willfully; and/or
  • The officer was not engaged in his/her duties (maybe because s/he was engaging in police misconduct) when the alleged battery occurred.

In order to help you better understand the California crime of battery on a peace officer, our California criminal defense attorneys will address the following:

1. Legal Definition of California Battery on a Police Officer

2. Penalties for Battery on a Peace Officer

2.1. Penalties for felony battery on a peace officer causing injury

3. Legal Defenses to Battery on a Peace / Police Officer Charges

4. Penal Code 243(b) and 243(c) and Related Offenses

4.1. Penal Code 242 simple battery
4.2. Penal Code 243(d) battery causing serious injury
4.3. Penal Code 148(a)(1) resisting arrest

If, after reading this article, you would like more information, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

1. Legal Definition of California Battery on a Police Officer

The legal definition of battery on a peace / police officer under Penal Code 243(b) and (c) consists of the following “elements of the crime”:

  1. The alleged victim was a peace officer or other protected person performing his/her duties;
  2. The defendant willfully and unlawfully touched the victim in a harmful or offensive manner; and
  3. When the defendant did this, s/he knew or reasonably should have known that the victim was a peace officer or other protected person engaged in the performance of his/her duties.6

All of these are facts that the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt for the defendant to be guilty of this offense.

Let's take a closer look at some of the terms in these elements:

Peace officer or other protected person

Battery on a peace officer laws are usually used to prosecute alleged batteries on peace officers employed by law enforcement agencies.

28001_policecarmarked
Battery against a police officer laws apply to most law enforcement officers in California.

This group includes (but is not limited to):

  • Police officers,
  • Officers with sheriff's departments,
  • California Highway Patrol officers,
  • Transit police (such as those employed by the BART system in the San Francisco Bay Area), and
  • Port or harbor police.7

This group can include police officers who are working as part-time or casual private security guards, as long as they are in a police uniform and performing peace officer duties.8

Example: Brian is pulled over by Norma, a California Highway Patrol officer, even though he was not speeding. Norma insists he was speeding, and Brian disagrees.

Finally Norma orders Brian to get out of his car. After he opens his door, she grabs his arm to pull him out. He brushes her hand away forcefully, knocking her to the ground.

Norma qualifies as a peace officer for purposes of Penal Code 243(b) and (c), and Brian may be guilty of battery on a peace officer for this incident.

California's battery on a police officer law also extends to a long list of public officials and other professionals who are not law enforcement officers. These are:

  • Custodial officers,
  • Firefighters,
  • Emergency medical technicians (EMT) and paramedics,
  • Lifeguards,
  • Security officers,
  • Custody assistants,
  • Process servers,
  • Traffic officers,
  • Code enforcement officers,
  • Animal control officers,
  • Search and rescue members,
  • Employees of a probation department, and
  • Doctors or nurses providing emergency medical care.9
Img-child-ambulance
Penal Code 243(b) and (c) PC also apply to battery against emergency medical personnel.

Example: Martha and her friends are roughhousing in a public pool.

The lifeguard on duty tells them they are endangering other patrons and they need to stop. They laugh at him, and Martha throws a beach ball at his head.

Martha may be charged under California's battery on a peace officer law because lifeguards are covered under that law.

Performing his/her duties

Penal Code 243(b) and (c) only apply if you are alleged to have committed battery against a protected person when s/he was engaged in the performance of his/her duties.10

Example: Cooper is drinking at a bar when he gets into an argument with Luke, another bar patron. The argument ends with Cooper striking Luke in the face.

It turns out that Luke is a firefighter. But he was not performing his duties as a firefighter while drinking at the bar.

Thus, Cooper is not guilty of California battery on a peace officer. (But he may be guilty of simple battery under Penal Code 242 PC.) 11

Touched in a violent or offensive manner

The basic definition of battery is any violent or offensive touching.12

Battery_shadow
"Battery" refers to any harmful or offensive touching.

This can include the slightest touching if it is done in a rude or angry way. The touching does not have to cause pain or injury of any kind.13

Example: Natasha is a high school student. A security officer at her public school catches her buying marijuana in the hallway from another student.

Natasha is terrified that his incident will prevent her from getting into college. She immediately starts crying. When officer takes her arm to lead her toward the principal's office, Natasha hysterically slaps at his hand.

Natasha's slaps did not injure or even hurt the officer in any way. But because she touched him angrily, she may be charged with battery on a peace officer.

And the definition of battery on a peace officer may include a violent or offensive touching of an object that is closely attached to or connected with the victim (such as an article of clothing s/he is wearing, or a purse or bag s/he is carrying). California courts have not provided a clear answer on this point.14

Willfully

A touching is only a battery on a peace officer if it is done “willfully.”15

“Willfully” means that you acted willingly or on purpose. It does not necessarily mean that you intended to:

  • Break the law,
  • Hurt someone else, or
  • Gain any advantage.16

Knew or reasonably should have known that the victim was a peace officer

Finally, you are only guilty of battery against a peace officer if you either knew OR reasonably should have known that you were acting against a peace officer or someone else protected by PC 243(b) and (c).17

Badge_housesearch
You are only guilty of battery on a peace officer if you knew s/he was a peace officer.

In deciding whether this was the case, a California jury is likely to consider factors such as:

  • Whether the law enforcement officer or other protected person was wearing a uniform,
  • Whether s/he clearly announced his/her status to you, and/or
  • Whether s/he was driving in a clearly marked vehicle (police car, ambulance, etc.).

Example: Mike enters a liquor store, pulls a gun on the clerk, and demands all the money from the cash register. The clerk gives it to him.

Mike does not know that Joe, an off-duty police officer, is browsing in the aisles of the store. Joe is wearing shorts and a t-shirt.

When Mike walks out of the store, Joe follows him. Joe then catches up to him on the street and demands that he stop. Mike pistol-whips Joe with his gun and runs away.

Under the circumstances, there was no reason for Mike to know that Joe was a law enforcement officer. Thus, while Mike may be guilty of simple battery,assault with a firearm, and/or California robbery—he is probably not guilty under PC 243(b) and (c).

2. Penalties for Battery on a Peace Officer

Basic battery on a peace / police officer under Penal Code 243(b) PC is a California misdemeanor.18

The potential penalties are:

2.1. Penalties for felony battery on a peace officer causing injury

The penalties for battery on a peace officer or protected person increase if the battery is alleged to have caused an “injury.”20

Doctor-rx
Under California's battery on a police officer law, an "injury" is any physical injury requiring medical treatment.

An “injury” means any physical injury that requires professional medical treatment.21

This doesn't mean that the victim needs to have sought professional medical treatment—OR that an injury will be deemed to have occurred if s/he sought medical treatment unnecessarily.22

Example: Officer Nagle, a police officer, is trying to arrest Oscar for California criminal trespass. Oscar struggles with the officer, striking him in the groin and pinning his hand between a pair of handcuffs and the floor.

Officer Nagle goes to a doctor after this altercation. The doctor takes an X-ray and does not find any broken bones.

But because of cuts and soreness on his hand, Officer Nagle is moved to phone-answering duty at work for several days.

Oscar is guilty of battery on a peace officer causing injury. Even though Officer Nagle did not receive any particular medical treatment, a jury could reasonably conclude that Oscar did severe enough damage to cause an “injury.”23

Battery on a peace officer that causes injury is a wobbler.24

This means that it may be charged as either a misdemeanor OR a felony, depending on:

  1. The defendant's criminal history, and
  2. The circumstances of the offense (including the extent of the officer's injuries).25

Charged as a misdemeanor, battery on a police officer causing injury carries the same potential penalties listed above for battery not causing injury—except that the maximum fine increases to ten thousand dollars ($10,000) if the victim is a peace officer (as opposed to a firefighter or other protected person).26

Jail3
Battery against a peace officer causing injury can lead to a longer jail sentence.

But when it is charged as a felony, then the potential penalties for PC 243(c) battery causing injury are:

3. Legal Defenses to Battery on a Peace / Police Officer Charges

The best way to fight Penal Code 243(b) or 243(c) charges in California is with the help of a criminal defense attorney who has experience with California assault and battery law.

S/he will understand what your options are and may be able to help you assert some of the following common legal defenses:

You acted in self-defense or defense of someone else

The legal defense of self-defense/defense of others can apply to battery of a peace officer charges.28

This defense applies if all of the following are true:

  1. You reasonably believed that you or someone else was in imminent danger of suffering bodily injury or being touched unlawfully;
  2. You reasonably believed that the immediate use of force against a law enforcement officer or other protected person was necessary to defend against that danger; and
  3. You used no more force than was reasonably necessary to defend against that danger.29
Police-brutality
Self-defense in response to police brutality is a valid defense to battery on a peace officer charges.

However, words alone—no matter how offensive—are not enough to justify a battery on a peace officer. You can only claim self-defense/defense of others if you reasonably believed someone was in danger of an unlawful touching or physical injury.30

Example: Officer Phil responds to a call about a loud party with several other officers. The officers arrest a few people at the party.

Carlos is a friend of one of the people being arrested. He tells Officer Phil he thinks the arrests aren't justified. Officer Phil says to Carlos menacingly, “Well, what are you going to do about it?”

Carlos, who is barefoot, then kicks Officer Phil in the shins.

Officer Phil arguably used “fighting words” with Carlos, but that does not justify the kick. So Carlos is guilty of battery on a peace officer and cannot claim self-defense as a legal defense.31

You did not act willfully

Even though you don't need to have intended to harm someone, you do need to have acted “willfully” in order to be guilty of Penal Code 243(b) or (c) battery on a peace officer.32

According to Palm Springs criminal defense lawyer Michael Scafiddi:33

“This defense is most often useful to defendants who are accused of battering a police officer while they were being taken into custody. Maybe you were physically uncomfortable while being placed in handcuffs or into the back of a patrol car—and while you trying to adjust your position you accidentally struck an officer. It is all too common for law enforcement to cry “battery” in situations like that.”

The officer was not performing his/her duties

You are only guilty of battery on an officer for actions that you took while an officer was performing his/her duties.34

Img-misconduct-police
You are not guilty of battery against a police officer who was engaging in police misconduct.

An officer is NOT considered to be engaged in the performance of his/her duties if s/he is:

  • Arresting or detaining someone unlawfully,
  • Engaging in police brutality,
  • Engaging in an unlawful search/seizure, or
  • Engaging in unlawful racial profiling.35

So battery on an officer in one of these situations should NOT be punishable under Penal Code 243(b) or (c) (though it still may mean you are guilty of PC 242 simple battery).

4. Penal Code 243(b) and 243(c) and Related Offenses

California offenses that are closely related to battery on a peace or police officer include:

4.1. Penal Code 242 simple battery

Simple battery under Penal Code 242 PC is the willful or unlawful touching of anyone (whether or not they are a peace officer or other protected person).36

Simple battery is a misdemeanor. The penalties in most cases include a fine of up to two thousand dollars ($2,000) and/or up to six (6) months in county jail.37

If you are charged with battery against a police officer and the prosecutor has only weak evidence that the officer was performing his/her duties, or that you knew s/he was an officer, then it may make sense to try to get the charges reduced to simple battery through a plea bargain.

4.2. Penal Code 243(d) battery causing serious injury

Penal Code 243(d) PC “battery causing serious bodily injury” will be charged if you inflict serious bodily injury on someone else through battery—including battery on a peace officer.

Img-battery-fist
Battery causing serious injury can carry a longer sentence than battery on a peace officer.

The definition of “serious bodily injury” is distinct from the better-known legal definition of “great bodily injury/harm.” A serious bodily injury is any serious impairment of physical condition—such as a broken bone or concussion.38

Battery with serious injury is a wobbler in California law, which means it may be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony.39

If it is charged as a California felony, battery causing serious bodily injury can lead to two (2), three (3), or four (4) years in prison.40

If you are alleged to have committed battery against a peace officer and the battery is alleged to have resulted in serious bodily injury, then prosecutors may choose to charge you with either PC 243(d) battery causing serious injury or PC 243(c) battery on a peace officer.

Because the felony sentence for battery causing serious injury is somewhat longer, they are likely to choose the former.

4.3. Penal Code 148(a)(1) resisting arrest

Penal Code 148(a)(1) PC “resisting arrest” can be another helpful plea bargain from “battery on a police officer” charges.

This offense is defined as resisting, delaying, or otherwise obstructing a peace officer or emergency medical technician while s/he is performing his/her duties.41

Resisting arrest is a misdemeanor carrying a maximum sentence of one (1) year in county jail, and/or a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000).42

Even though the penalties are only slightly less than those for misdemeanor battery against a peace officer, a “resisting arrest” conviction will likely be less of a black mark on your criminal record.

Call us for help…

Help-support-call-us

For questions about Penal Code 243(b) & 243(c) PC California battery on a peace or police officer, or to discuss your case confidentially with one of our California criminal defense attorneys, do not hesitate to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

We have local criminal law offices in and around Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, San Jose, Oakland, the San Francisco Bay area, and several nearby cities.

For more information on the definition of Nevada “battery on a peace / police officer” laws, please see our page on Nevada “battery on a peace / police officer” laws.

You may also find helpful information in our related articles on California Battery Penal Code 242 PC; Penal Code 415 Disturbing the Peace; Police Misconduct and Civil Rights Violations; Legal Definition of a Misdemeanor in California Law; Legal Definition of a Wobbler; Legal Definition of a California Felony; Common Legal Defenses to California Crimes; Self-Defense as a California Legal Defense; California Marijuana Laws; California Jury Trials; Assault with a Firearm Penal Code 245(a)(2) PC; California Robbery Penal Code 211 PC; Misdemeanor (Summary) Probation in California; California Criminal Trespass Laws Penal Code 602 PC; Felony (Formal) Probation in California; California Realignment AB 109; Racial Profiling in California; California Search/Seizure Laws; Penal Code 243(d) PC “Battery Causing Serious Bodily Injury”; The Legal Definition of Great Bodily Injury/Harm; and Penal Code 148(a)(1) PC “Resisting Arrest.”

Legal References:


1 Penal Code 243 PC – Battery against a peace officer; punishment. (“(b) When a battery is committed against the person of a peace officer, custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician, lifeguard, security officer, custody assistant, process server, traffic officer, code enforcement officer, animal control officer, or search and rescue member engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, including when the peace officer is in a police uniform and is concurrently performing the duties required of him or her as a peace officer while also employed in a private capacity as a part-time or casual private security guard or patrolman, or a nonsworn employee of a probation department engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care outside a hospital, clinic, or other health care facility, and the person committing the offense knows or reasonably should know that the victim is a peace officer, custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician, lifeguard, security officer, custody assistant, process server, traffic officer, code enforcement officer, animal control officer, or search and rescue member engaged in the performance of his or her duties, nonsworn employee of a probation department, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care, the battery is punishable by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment. (c)(1) When a battery is committed against a custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician, lifeguard, process server, traffic officer, or animal control officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, or a nonsworn employee of a probation department engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care outside a hospital, clinic, or other health care facility, and the person committing the offense knows or reasonably should know that the victim is a nonsworn employee of a probation department, custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician, lifeguard, process server, traffic officer, or animal control officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care, and an injury is inflicted on that victim, the battery is punishable by a fine of not more than two thousand dollars ($2,000), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years. (2) When the battery specified in paragraph (1) is committed against a peace officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, including when the peace officer is in a police uniform and is concurrently performing the duties required of him or her as a peace officer while also employed in a private capacity as a part-time or casual private security guard or patrolman and the person committing the offense knows or reasonably should know that the victim is a peace officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties, the battery is punishable by a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years, or by both that fine and imprisonment.”)

2 Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instruction (“CALCRIM”) 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)). (“The defendant is charged [in Count ] with battery against a peace officer [in violation of Penal Code section 243]. To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that: 1 <Insert officer's name, excluding title> was a peace officer performing the duties of (a/an) <insert title of peace officer specified in Pen. Code, § 830 et seq.>; 2 The defendant willfully [and unlawfully] touched <insert officer's name, excluding title> in a harmful or offensive manner; [AND] 3 When the defendant acted, (he/she) knew, or reasonably should have known, that<insert officer's name, excluding title> was a peace officer who was performing (his/her) duties(;/.) <Give element 4 when instructing on felony battery against a peace officer.> [AND 4 <insert officer's name, excluding title> suffered injury as a result of the touching(;/.)] <Give element 5 when instructing on self-defense or defense of another.> [AND 5 The defendant did not act (in self-defense/ [or] in defense of someone else).]”)

3 Penal Code 243 PC – Battery against a peace officer; punishment, endnote 1, above.

4 Same.

5 Same.

6 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

7 Penal Code 830.1 PC – Persons who are peace officers [including for purposes of battery on a peace officer laws]. (“(a) Any sheriff, undersheriff, or deputy sheriff, employed in that capacity, of a county, any chief of police of a city or chief, director, or chief executive officer of a consolidated municipal public safety agency that performs police functions, any police officer, employed in that capacity and appointed by the chief of police or chief, director, or chief executive of a public safety agency, of a city, any chief of police, or police officer of a district, including police officers of the San Diego Unified Port District Harbor Police, authorized by statute to maintain a police department, any marshal or deputy marshal of a superior court or county, any port warden or port police officer of the Harbor Department of the City of Los Angeles, or any inspector or investigator employed in that capacity in the office of a district attorney, is a peace officer.”)

8 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)). (“[A <insert title of peace officer specified in Pen. Code, § 830 et seq.> is also performing the duties of a peace officer if (he/she) is in a police uniform and performing the duties required of (him/her) as a peace officer and, at the same time, is working in a private capacity as a part-time or casual private security guard or (patrolman/patrolwoman).]”)

9 Penal Code 243 PC – Battery against a peace officer; punishment, endnote 1, above.

10 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

11 Penal Code 242 PC – Battery defined [compare to definition of battery on a peace/police officer]. (“A battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.”)

12 Same.

13 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)). (“[The slightest touching can be enough to commit a battery if it is done in a rude or angry way. Making contact with another person, including through his or her clothing, is enough. The touching does not have to cause pain or injury of any kind.]”)

14 CALCRIM 960 – Simple Battery (Pen. Code, § 242) [also applies to battery on a peace / police officer]. (“RELATED ISSUES Touching of Something Attached to or Closely Connected with Person. The committee could not locate any authority on whether it is sufficient to commit a battery if the defendant touches something attached to or closely connected with the person. Thus, the committee has not included this principle in the instruction.”)

15 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

16 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)). (“Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on purpose. It is not required that he or she intend to break the law, hurt someone else, or gain any advantage.”)

17 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

18 Penal Code 243 PC – Battery against a peace officer; punishment, endnote 1, above.

19 Same.

20 Same.

21 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)). (“[An injury is any physical injury that requires professional medical treatment. The question whether an injury requires such treatment cannot be answered simply by deciding whether or not a person sought or received treatment. You may consider those facts, but you must decide this question based on the nature, extent, and seriousness of the injury itself.]”)

22 Same.

23 Based on the facts of People v. Longoria (1995) 34 Cal.App.4th 12, 18. (“We find substantial evidence from which a rational trier of fact could have found that Officer Nagle's injuries required professional medical treatment. (People v. Bloom (1989) 48 Cal.3d 1194, 1208 [259 Cal.Rptr. 669, 774 P.2d 698].) His injuries appear to have been more serious and incapacitating than those found legally sufficient in People v. Lara. Officer Nagle was kicked in the groin and knocked to his knees; the fingers and bottom side of his right hand were cut, and his hand was crushed; he could not hold his firearm and had difficulty unwrapping his holster; he was placed on restrictive phone-answering duty for three to five days. We are satisfied that within the meaning of section 243, subdivision (c) [California's battery on a peace officer causing injury law], an “injury” was inflicted on Officer Nagle.”)

24 Penal Code 243 PC – Battery against a peace officer; punishment, endnote 1, above.

25 Same.

26 Same.

27 Same.

See also Penal Code 1170(h) PC. (“ (h)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (3), a felony punishable pursuant to this subdivision where the term is not specified in the underlying offense shall be punishable by a term of imprisonment in a county jail for 16 months, or two or three years. (2) Except as provided in paragraph (3), a felony punishable pursuant to this subdivision shall be punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for the term described in the underlying offense.”)

28 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

29 CALCRIM 3470 – Right to Self-Defense or Defense of Another (Non-Homicide [with respect to acts involving California battery on a peace/police officer]). ("The defendant acted in lawful (self-defense/ [or] defense of another) if: [1] The defendant reasonably believed that (he/she/ [or] someone else/ [or] <insert name of third party>) was in imminent danger of suffering bodily injury [or was in imminent danger of being touched unlawfully]; [2] The defendant reasonably believed that the immediate use of force was necessary to defend against that danger; AND [3] The defendant used no more force than was reasonably necessary to defend against that danger.")

30 CALCRIM 960 – Simple Battery (Pen. Code, § 242). (“[Words alone, no matter how offensive or exasperating, are not an excuse for this crime.]”)

31 Based on the facts of People v. Martinez (1970) 3 Cal.App.3d 886.

32 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

33 Palm Springs criminal defense lawyer Michael Scafiddi is a former police officer and police sergeant. He understands the culture of police departments and how hasty officers can be to request charges for battery on a peace officer. He represents clients in all San Bernardino County courthouses and Riverside County courthouses.

34 CALCRIM 945 – Battery Against Peace Officer (Pen. Code, §§ 242, 243(b), (c)(2)), endnote 2, above.

35 CALCRIM 2670 – Lawful performance; peace officer. (“A peace officer is not lawfully performing his or her duties [for purposes of battery on a peace officer law] if he or she is (unlawfully arresting or detaining someone/ [or] using unreasonable or excessive force when making or attempting to make an otherwise lawful arrest or detention).”)

36 Penal Code 242 PC – Battery [including battery causing serious injury] defined, endnote 11, above.

37 Penal Code 243 PC – [Simple] Battery; punishment [compare to punishment for battery against a peace officer]. (“(a) A battery is punishable by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months, or by both the fine and imprisonment.”)

38 CALCRIM 925 - California's "battery causing serious bodily injury" law [may be charged instead of battery against a peace / police officer]. ("[A serious bodily injury means a serious impairment of physical condition. Such an injury may include [, but is not limited to]: (loss of consciousness/ concussion/ bone fracture/ protracted loss or impairment of function of any bodily member or organ/ a wound requiring extensive suturing/ [and] serious disfigurement).]")

39 Penal Code 243(d) PC – Battery; punishment [compare to penalties for battery on a peace officer]. (“(d) When a battery is committed against any person and serious bodily injury is inflicted on the person, the battery is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for two, three, or four years.”)

40 See same.

41 Penal Code 148 PC – Resisting arrest [potential plea bargain from PC 243(b) or (c) charges]. (“(a)(1) Every person who willfully resists, delays, or obstructs any public officer, peace officer, or an emergency medical technician, as defined in Division 2.5 (commencing with Section 1797) of the Health and Safety Code, in the discharge or attempt to discharge any duty of his or her office or employment, when no other punishment is prescribed, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.”)

42 Same.

Free attorney consultations...

Our attorneys want to hear your side of the story. Contact us 24/7 to schedule a FREE consultation with a criminal defense lawyer. We may be able to get your charges reduced or even dismissed altogether. And if necessary, we will champion your case all the way to trial.

Regain peace of mind...

Our defense attorneys understand that being accused of a crime is one of the most difficult times of your life. Rely on us to zealously and discreetly protect your rights and to fight for the most favorable resolution possible.

Office Locations

Shouse Law Group has multiple locations all across California and Nevada. Click Office Locations to find out which office is right for you.

Call us 24/7 (855) 396-0370