If a Kansan faces arrest on assault charges, there is confusion for those unfamiliar with the legal system. Unless one is a lawyer, they are well-versed on assault and its potential impact.
Assault charges are determined by Kansas state law, but generally, assault is defined as an act in which intent to harm someone else and can also include acts that are threatening. This means an incident of assault could potentially be related to an incident in which no physical contact occurred.
This is in contrast to battery. Battery is the physical touching that was harmful or offensive. An example of assault would include instances where a reasonable person would fear for their safety. This is based on what an ordinary person would conclude, based on the situation they faced when that person alleged they were assaulted. Assault can happen in situations where people know each other well or not at all.
For many, felony assault can occur between two people who know each other well, like spouses or family members. An argument can quickly turn into something more physical, and this could leave one or both spouses looking at assault charges.
A spouse may not even need to raise a hand to their partner, only the threat to do so, could result in an assault charge. Battery, on the other hand, requires the physical contact to be considered for such a charge.
A situation of assault could have occurred by a spur-of-the-moment heated exchange, or it could have been a well-planned incident. If an assault was planned, and the prosecution can prove that it was, this could lead to stiffer penalties for the accused, if convicted.
Crimes of passion, on the other hand, are often judged differently based on the factors that lead up to the alleged assault incident. But, any alleged incident of felony assault can bring serious consequences, regardless of the circumstances surrounding the event.
Source: Criminal.FindLaw.com, "Assault and Battery Overview," accessed on Feb. 19, 2018