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Scenario

Case Number: 1111111

Date: August 13, 2016

Reporting Officer: Colt Winchester

Incident Type: Crime Against the Person

Address of Occurrence: 111 Felony Drive, Happy Town, GA 15486

Witnesses: Alan Skittles: Store owner. Male, 43, LatinoMichael Smith: Employee. Male, 21, African AmericanAndrea Sianturi: Customer. Female, 27, Asian American

Weapon or Objects Used: Umbrella or Shoe

On August 13, 2016, at approximately 20:43, officers responded to 111 Felony Drive in regard to white male bleeding from his face. The victim, Samuel Clark, was friends with a female, Summer Breeze who lived at 111 Misdemeanor Lane. Mr. Clark was walking to Ms. Breeze’s residence approximately one block east of Mr. Clark’s residence. As Samuel Clark turned the corner, he observed two white men approaching him. A witness, Alan Skittles, identified the two men as Bubba Hurt and Skeeter Redrum. Both Bubba Hurt and Skeeter Redrum began yelling at Samuel Clark for him to leave Summer Breeze alone and that it was the “last time he put his hands on her.” It began to rain, so Samuel Clark opened his umbrella and continued to walk north on Felony Drive. Bubba Hurt shoved Samuel Clark from behind, causing Samuel Clark to fall to the sidewalk. When Samuel Clark began to pick himself up from the sidewalk, Skeeter Redrum kicked Samuel Clark in the face causing Samuel Clark to fall onto the street. While Samuel Clark was lying on his back in the street, Bubba Hurt began to kick Samuel Clark. In response, Samuel Clark grabbed his umbrella and swung, hitting Bubba Hurt in his eye. As Samuel Clark stood up, Summer Breeze hit Samuel Clark in the side of his head with her shoe rendering Samuel Clark unconscious. A witness to the incident contacted 911 to respond. Samuel Clark and Bubba Hurt were taken into custody and transported to the hospital. Summer Breeze and Skeeter Redrum were taken into custody and transported to the Police Headquarters. Bubba Hurt died at the hospital, and Samuel Clark suffered a permanent brain injury. 

Instructions

To complete this assignment, act as the District Attorney and complete the following:

  1. Determine what charges, if any, for all four individuals involved in this incident.
  2. Provide definitions of simple assault, aggravated assault, or aggravated battery.
  3. Describe your knowledge regarding self-defense. 

Use Week 8 Assignment Document Library [PDF] to formulate your answers. Your assignment should be four-page typed, double spaced, using Times New Roman font (size 12), with one-inch margins on all sides; all references used should come from the Document Library. 

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Week 8 Assignment Document Library

While your personal values and experiences are important, your report should be
based solely on information provided in this document

Table of Contents
Georgia Assault and Battery Laws ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 2

Definitions of Georgia Assault and Battery Laws …………………………………………………………………………… 4

Definition of Self-defense …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 12

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Georgia Assault and Battery Laws

Code Sections
Simple Assault: O.C.G.A. §16-5-20
Aggravated Assault: O.C.G.A §16-5-21
Simple Battery: O.C.G.A §16-5-23
Aggravated Battery: O.C.G.A §16-5-24

What is Prohibited

Simple Assault: Attempting to commit a violent injury on
someone else or putting them in a situation where it’s
reasonable they can be injured in such a manner. No actual
physical touching is necessary to violate the law. Words can
be enough. For example, threatening to break someone’s
neck, if done in a menacing manner, can be considered
simple assault.
Aggravated Assault: Assaulting someone:
(1) With intent to murder, to rape, or to rob;
(2) With a deadly weapon or with any object, device, or
instrument which, when used offensively against a person, is
likely to or actually does result in serious bodily injury; or
(3) Shooting a firearm from within a
motor vehicle toward a person or persons.
Simple Battery:
(1) Intentionally making physical contact of an insulting or
provoking nature with the person of
another; or
(2) Intentionally causing physical harm to another person.
Aggravated Battery: Intentionally and maliciously inflicting a
serious injury to the victim, such as loss of a limb, loss of use
of a limb, or serious disfigurement.

What is “Serious
Disfigurement?”

Any kind of physical alteration to another person’s body, such
as a visible scar on someone’s face or other body part; or a
broken bone that alters one’s physical appearance

Penalty

Simple Assault: Misdemeanor: Up to 1 year in jail, fines
reaching $1,000, probation, and restitution. Can be elevated
to a “high” and “aggravated” misdemeanor with enhanced
penalties (up to 1 year in jail and $5,000 fines) if the assault
committed involved a firearm, public transportation, a
pregnant woman, a public school employee, a senior citizen,
or if it was a domestic assault (committed against a family
member).
Aggravated Assault: Felony: One to twenty years in prison,
fines, restitution.

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Simple Battery: Misdemeanor: Up to 1 year in jail, fines up to
$1,000, probation, and restitution. Can be elevated to a
misdemeanor of high and aggravated nature if it’s determined
the victim was pregnant, over 65, a police officer, a caregiver,
school employee, or if the crime is domestic. This
misdemeanor is also punishable by up to one year but carries
potential fines up to $5,000.
Aggravated Battery: Felony: one to twenty years in prison
minimum, fines, restitution.

Who Prosecutes
this Crime? Georgia District Attorney’s Offices

Hate Crimes

O.C.G.A. §17-10-17. If someone commits an assault or
battery or any crime against a victim because of bias or
prejudice, such as racial or gender bias, the court must
impose a more severe penalty than would be normally
imposed for the crime (according to court or local policy), but
no greater than the maximum sentence permitted under the
statute. The offender must serve at least 90% of the sentence
before being released (offenders serving sentences in jail or
prison generally serve less than the sentence imposed
because of “good time” credit or early release programs for
good behavior).

http://statelaws.findlaw.com/georgia-law/georgia-assault-and-battery-laws.html

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Definitions of Georgia Assault and Battery Laws

Georgia Criminal Code
Title 16

2010 GEORGIA CODE
TITLE 16 – CRIMES AND OFFENSES
CHAPTER 5 – CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON
ARTICLE 2 – ASSAULT AND BATTERY
§ 16-5-20 – Simple assault
O.C.G.A. 16-5-20 (2010)

16-5-20. Simple assault

(a) A person commits the offense of simple assault when he or she either:

(1) Attempts to commit a violent injury to the person of another; or

(2) Commits an act which places another in reasonable apprehension of immediately
receiving a violent injury.

(b) Except as provided in subsections (c) through (h) of this Code section, a person who
commits the offense of simple assault shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

(c) Any person who commits the offense of simple assault in a public transit vehicle or
station shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished for a misdemeanor of a high and
aggravated nature. For purposes of this Code section, “public transit vehicle” means a
bus, van, or rail car used for the transportation of passengers within a system which
receives a subsidy from tax revenues or is operated under a franchise contract with a
county or municipality of this state.

(d) If the offense of simple assault is committed between past or present spouses,
persons who are parents of the same child, parents and children, stepparents and
stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or other persons excluding siblings
living or formerly living in the same household, the defendant shall be punished for a
misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature. In no event shall this subsection be
applicable to corporal punishment administered by a parent or guardian to a child or
administered by a person acting in loco parentis.

(e) Any person who commits the offense of simple assault against a person who is 65
years of age or older shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished for a misdemeanor of a
high and aggravated nature.

(f) Any person who commits the offense of simple assault against an employee of a
public school system of this state while such employee is engaged in official duties or

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on school property shall, upon conviction of such offense, be punished for a
misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature. For purposes of this Code section,
“school property” shall include public school buses and stops for public school buses as
designated by local school boards of education.

(g) Any person who commits the offense of simple assault against a female who is
pregnant at the time of the offense shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished for a
misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature.

(h) Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to permit the prosecution of:

(1) Any person for conduct relating to an abortion for which the consent of the pregnant
woman, or person authorized by law to act on her behalf, has been obtained or for
which such consent is implied by law;

(2) Any person for any medical treatment of the pregnant woman or her unborn child; or

(3) Any woman with respect to her unborn child.

For the purposes of this subsection, the term “unborn child” means a
member of the species homo sapiens at any stage of development who is
carried in the womb.

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TITLE 16 – CRIMES AND OFFENSES
CHAPTER 5 – CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON
ARTICLE 2 – ASSAULT AND BATTERY
§ 16-5-21 – Aggravated assault
O.C.G.A. 16-5-21 (2010)

16-5-21. Aggravated assault

(a) A person commits the offense of aggravated assault when he or she assaults:

(1) With intent to murder, to rape, or to rob;

(2) With a deadly weapon or with any object, device, or instrument which, when used
offensively against a person, is likely to or actually does result in serious bodily injury; or

(3) A person or persons without legal justification by discharging a firearm from within a
motor vehicle toward a person or persons.

(b) Except as provided in subsections (c) through (k) of this Code section, a person
convicted of the offense of aggravated assault shall be punished by imprisonment for
not less than one nor more than 20 years.

(c) A person who knowingly commits the offense of aggravated assault upon a peace
officer while the peace officer is engaged in, or on account of the performance of, his or
her official duties shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not
less than five nor more than 20 years.

(d) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated assault against a person who is
65 years of age or older shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for
not less than three nor more than 20 years.

(e) (1) As used in this subsection, the term “correctional officer” shall include
superintendents, wardens, deputy wardens, guards, and correctional officers of state,
county, and municipal penal institutions who are certified by the Georgia Peace Officer
Standards and Training Council pursuant to Chapter 8 of Title 35 and employees of the
Department of Juvenile Justice who are known to be employees of the department or
who have given reasonable identification of their employment. The term “correctional
officer” shall also include county jail officers who are certified or registered by the
Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council pursuant to Chapter 8 of Title
35.

(2) A person who knowingly commits the offense of aggravated assault upon a
correctional officer while the correctional officer is engaged in, or on account of the
performance of, his or her official duties shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by
imprisonment for not less than five nor more than 20 years.

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(f) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated assault in a public transit vehicle
or station shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not less than
three nor more than 20 years. For purposes of this Code section, “public transit vehicle”
has the same meaning as in subsection (c) of Code Section 16-5-20.

(g) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated assault upon a person in the
course of violating Code Section 16-8-2 where the property that was the subject of the
theft was a vehicle engaged in commercial transportation of cargo or any appurtenance
thereto, including without limitation any such trailer, semitrailer, container, or other
associated equipment, or the cargo being transported therein or thereon, shall upon
conviction be punished by imprisonment for not less than five years nor more than 20
years, a fine not less than $50,000.00 nor more than $200,000.00, or both such fine and
imprisonment. For purposes of this subsection, the term “vehicle” includes without
limitation any railcar.

(h) A person convicted of an offense described in paragraph (3) of subsection (a) of this
Code section shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than 20
years.

(i) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated assault involving the use of a
firearm upon a student or teacher or other school personnel within a school safety zone
as defined in paragraph (1) of subsection (a) of Code Section 16-11-127.1 shall, upon
conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than 20
years.

(j) If the offense of aggravated assault is committed between past or present spouses,
persons who are parents of the same child, parents and children, stepparents and
stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or other persons excluding siblings
living or formerly living in the same household, the defendant shall be punished by
imprisonment for not less than three nor more than 20 years.

(k) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated assault with intent to rape
against a child under the age of 14 years shall be punished by imprisonment for not less
than 25 nor more than 50 years. Any person convicted under this subsection shall, in
addition, be subject to the sentencing and punishment provisions of Code Section 17-
10-6.2.

(l) A person who knowingly commits the offense of aggravated assault upon an officer
of the court while such officer is engaged in, or on account of the performance of, his or
her official duties shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not
less than five nor more than 20 years. As used in this subsection, the term “officer of the
court” means a judge, attorney, clerk of court, deputy clerk of court, court reporter, court
interpreter or probation officer.

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2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 16 – CRIMES AND OFFENSES
CHAPTER 5 – CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON
ARTICLE 2 – ASSAULT AND BATTERY
§ 16-5-24 – Aggravated battery O.C.G.A. 16-5-24 (2010)

16-5-24. Aggravated battery

A person commits the offense of aggravated battery when he or she maliciously causes
bodily harm to another by depriving him or her of a member of his or her body, by
rendering a member of his or her body useless, or by seriously disfiguring his or her
body or a member thereof.

(b) Except as provided in subsections (c) through (h) of this Code section, a person
convicted of the offense of aggravated battery shall be punished by imprisonment for
not less than one nor more than 20 years.

(c) A person who knowingly commits the offense of aggravated battery upon a peace
officer while the officer is engaged in, or on account of the performance of, his or her
official duties shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not less
than ten nor more than 20 years.

(d) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated battery against a person who is
65 years of age or older shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for
not less than five nor more than 20 years.
(e)(1) As used in this subsection, the term “correctional officer” shall include
superintendents, wardens, deputy wardens, guards, and correctional officers of state,
county, and municipal penal institutions who are certified by the Georgia Peace Officer
Standards and Training Council pursuant to Chapter 8 of Title 35 and employees of the
Department of Juvenile Justice who are known to be employees of the department or
who have given reasonable identification of their employment. The term “correctional
officer” shall also include county jail officers who are certified or registered by the
Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council pursuant to Chapter 8 of Title
35.

(2) A person who knowingly commits the offense of aggravated battery upon a
correctional officer while the correctional officer is engaged in, or on account of the
performance of, his or her official duties shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by
imprisonment for not less than ten nor more than 20 years.

(f) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated battery in a public transit vehicle
or station shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by imprisonment for not less than
five nor more than 20 years. For purposes of this Code section, “public transit vehicle”
has the same meaning as in subsection (c) of Code Section 16-5-20.

(g) Any person who commits the offense of aggravated battery upon a student or

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teacher or other school personnel within a school safety zone as defined in paragraph
(1) of subsection (a) of Code Section 16-11-127.1 shall, upon conviction thereof, be
punished by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than 20 years.

(h) If the offense of aggravated battery is committed between past or present spouses,
persons who are parents of the same child, parents and children, stepparents and
stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or other persons excluding siblings
living or formerly living in the same household, the defendant shall be punished by
imprisonment for not less than three nor more than 20 years.
2010 Georgia Code

TITLE 16 – CRIMES AND OFFENSES
CHAPTER 5 – CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON
ARTICLE 2 – ASSAULT AND BATTERY
§ 16-5-25 – Opprobrious or abusive language as justification for simple assault or simple
battery
O.C.G.A. 16-5-25 (2010)

16-5-25. Opprobrious or abusive language as justification for
simple assault or simple battery

A person charged with the offense of simple assault or simple battery may introduce in
evidence any opprobrious or abusive language used by the person against whom force
was threatened or used; and the trier of facts may, in its discretion, find that the words
used were justification for simple assault or simple battery.
Georgia Aggravated Assault & Battery Laws

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LEGAL PRESUMPTIONS

What is Aggravated Assault?

The act of inflicting bodily harm on someone, or causing them to fear bodily harm is
considered a crime in the U.S., regardless of whether actual physical harm occurs. For
example, John is walking down the street carrying a bag of groceries. Bob, who is
walking toward John, makes a fist and tells John to move over or he will hit him. John is
stunned, and so does not move over immediately. Bob swings his fist at John’s face but
misses, and John sprints away in fear. Bob may be charged with simple assault as he
caused John to reasonably fear that he would suffer bodily harm if he remained.

Simple Assault vs. Aggravated Assault

Most states classify assaults as simple or aggravated according to the circumstances
surrounding the offense. Simple assault is most commonly recognized as an attempt or
threat to injure another person without actually striking them or causing bodily harm.
Aggravated assault occurs when the crime is taken a step further, such as when a
weapon is used, or the harm or threat takes place in certain circumstances. For
instance, threatening a person with a fist is often considered simple assault, but if a
perpetrator threatens another person with a baseball bat, it would be considered
aggravated assault.

Example of Aggravated Assault

If Bob, from the example above, moves his jacket aside to show to John that he is
carrying a gun in his belt, he would likely be charged with aggravated assault, rather
than simple assault. This would be true, even though he did not make a physical
attempt to hit or shoot John, because he made a threat with a weapon, causing John to
reasonably believe he would be harmed.

Deadly Weapons

A deadly weapon is any item that can be used to cause serious or fatal injury to a
person or animal. Deadly weapons include such weapons as guns and knives, but other
instruments can be considered deadly if they are used to threaten or attack someone.
Such weapons of opportunity may include boards, baseball bats, rocks, bricks, ice
picks, letter openers, tools, or any object that could cause serious harm or death.
In some jurisdictions, people with HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus) who have
had unprotected sex with a person not aware of the disease have been charged with
using a “deadly weapon.” The reasoning is that a person who knows he carries HIV
exposes another to the deadly virus basically assaults the other person with a weapon
capable of causing death.

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Degrees of Aggravated Assault

Many states break down the crime of assault even further than the basic and
aggravated assault charges in some jurisdictions. By using first- through fourth-degree
classifications, the judicial system is able to take into account the exact nature of the
offense.

• First-Degree Aggravated Assault – refers to a deliberate act in which the
perpetrator used premeditated malice. The perpetrator must have had the intent
to cause, or to attempt to cause, serious bodily injury (also “great bodily harm”).

• Second-Degree Aggravated Assault – refers to a deliberate act in which there

was no premeditation. This takes into account the mental state of the perpetrator
at the time of the assault.

• Third-Degree Assault – refers to an act in which the perpetrator attempts to

cause less serious bodily harm, making this a common charge when two
individuals are involved in a fight.

• Fourth-Degree Assault – refers to minor threats of harm, or causing the victim to

fear being harmed.

Great Bodily Harm

The term “great bodily harm” is used interchangeably with “serious bodily injury,”
“grievous bodily harm,” and “great bodily injury.” These terms refer to injuries that cause
extreme physical pain, unconsciousness, serious or permanent injury or disfigurement,
or long-term loss of function of any organ or body part. Great bodily harm also refers to
the infliction of any injury that creates a substantial risk of death.

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Definition of Self-defense

GEORGIA CRIMINAL CODE
TITLE 16
SELF DEFENSE

2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 16 – CRIMES AND OFFENSES
CHAPTER 3 – DEFENSES TO CRIMINAL PROSECUTIONS
ARTICLE 2 – JUSTIFICATION AND EXCUSE
O.C.G.A. 16-3-21 (2010)

16-3-21. Use of force in defense of self or others; evidence of
belief that force was necessary in murder or manslaughter
prosecution

(a) A person is justified in threatening or using force against another when and to the
extent that he or she reasonably believes that such threat or force is necessary to
defend himself or herself or a third person against such other’s imminent use of unlawful
force; however, except as provided in Code Section 16-3-23, a person is justified in
using force which is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm only if he or
she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily
injury to himself or herself or a third person or to prevent the commission of a forcible
felony.

(b) A person is not justified in using force under the circumstances specified in
subsection (a) of this Code section if he:

(1) Initially provokes the use of force against himself with the intent to use such force as
an excuse to inflict bodily harm upon the assailant;

(2) Is attempting to commit, committing, or fleeing after the commission or attempted
commission of a felony; or

(3) Was the aggressor or was engaged in a combat by agreement unless he withdraws
from the encounter and effectively communicates to such other person his intent to do
so and the other, notwithstanding, continues or threatens to continue the use of unlawful
force.

(c) Any rule, regulation, or policy of any agency of the state or any ordinance, resolution,
rule, regulation, or policy of any county, municipality, or other political subdivision of the
state which is in conflict with this Code section shall be null, void, and of no force and
effect.

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(d) In a prosecution for murder or manslaughter, if a defendant raises as a defense a
justification provided by subsection (a) of this Code section, the defendant, in order to
establish the defendant’s reasonable belief that the use of force or deadly force was
immediately necessary, may be permitted to offer:

(1) Relevant evidence that the defendant had been the victim of acts of family violence
or child abuse committed by the deceased, as such acts are described in Code
Sections 19-13-1 and 19-15-1, respectively; and

(2) Relevant expert testimony regarding the condition of the mind of the defendant at
the time of the offense, including those relevant facts and circumstances relating to the
family violence or child abuse that are the bases of the expert’s opinion.

  • Georgia Assault and Battery Laws
  • Definitions of Georgia Assault and Battery Laws
  • Definition of Self-defense