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Assault and Battery

Intent

Intent is an essential element of both offenses. Generally, it is only necessary for the defendant to have an intent to do the act that causes the harm. In other words, the act must be done voluntarily. Although an intent to harm the victim is likely to exist, it is not a required element of either offense. There is an exception to this rule for the attempted battery type of criminal assault. If a defendant who commits this crime does not have an intent to harm the victim, the individual cannot be guilty of the offense.

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Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationFree Legal Encyclopedia: Approximation of laws to AutopsyAssault and Battery - Intent, Defenses, Punishment