Felonies & Misdemeanors

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Unit 7 Felonies & Misdemeanors

By: April Mectalf

August 23, 2011

Kaplan University

Professor Laura Catron



On a warm Saturday night, Sharon, a teacher in a community where her family has lived for generations, and her husband, Rich, were sitting in a local hotel restaurant. They had already consumed two bottles of wine when an argument broke out between them. One word led to another and Sharon accused Rich of having an affair with his co-worker. At that point, Rich stood up, clenched his fist and said, "I've had it with you. I'm going to shut you up right now!" Sharon then picked up the empty wine bottle and hit her husband over the head with it. Blood was everywhere. The hotel manager immediately called 911 for help. When the police arrived, Sharon insisted that her action was in self-defense.


Assault - The threat or attempt to strike another, whether successful or not, provided the target is aware of the danger. The assaulter must be reasonably capable of carrying through the attack.

Battery - The actual intentional striking of someone, with intent to harm, or in a "rude and insolent manner" even if the injury is slight.


Simple Assault – a threat combined with a raised fist.

Simple Battery (Misdemeanor) spitting in someone's face; intentionally knocking a hat off someone's head.

Aggravated Assault (Felony) - Rape.

Aggravated Battery (Felony) – Striking someone with an object.

Argument One

Sharon was intoxicated at the time of the crime. Therefore, she should not be found guilty of assault and battery.

If I were to use this defense for Sharon, the argument would fall under the men rea element of criminal activity. Personally, I don’t feel it would be a very strong defense, therefore I would have to show her blood alcohol level or some proof of how high her blood alcohol level was via her height/weight in proportion to how much alcohol was consumed. I would also need to prove...
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