Black’s Law Dictionary defines assault as “the threat or use of force on another that causes that person to have a reasonable apprehension of imminent harmful or offensive contact.” This means that the tortfeasor does not have to make physical contact with the victim. The victim only needs to be placed under a reasonable amount of fear that the physical contact will occur. In fact if physical contact does occur, this tort is no longer considered an assault, it becomes a battery.
Battery is defined as “an intentional and offensive touching of another without lawful justification” according to Black’s Law Dictionary. The three main elements that identify battery are: “unconsented physical contact, offensive or harmful contact, and the tortfeasor’s intent to touch another person in an offensive or injurious manner (Buckley & Okrent, 2004).” One of the key elements is intent. If a person touches you but it was accidently, it would not be considered battery. The intent to injure the person must be present for battery. Also, if the tortfeasor intends to make harmful physical contact with one person, and accidently hits a different person, the intent is transferred to the unintended victim. So even if the tortfeasor didn’t intend to hit a third person, it is still a battery on that individual.
False imprisonment is when a tortfeasor purposely confines a person against their will. This tort also has some key elements, which are: “confinement without captive’s consent, tortfeasor’s intent to confine victim, confinement for an appreciable length of time, and no reasonable means of escape (Buckley & Okrent, 2004).” There are several ways of confining a person. This can be accomplished by locking the captive in a room with no windows and a locked door, or by using the threat of harm to keep the captive from escaping. The captive also needs to know that they are being...