When a battery is committed against any person and serious bodily injury is inflicted on the person, the battery is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for two, three, or four years. Penal Code 243d is wobbler and may be filed as a felony or a misdemeanor. If the case is filed as a felony, the prosecutor may choose to reduce the charges to a misdemeanor if mitigating circumstances are provided before trial. The judge also has the ability to reduce the felony charges to a misdemeanor at the preliminary hearing. In deciding whether to file the case as a misdemeanor of felony, the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office will look at numerous factors, including but not limited to, the extent of the injuries, prior acts of violence of defendant, prior acts of violence of the victim, prior criminal record of the victim and the defendant, as well as the totality of circumstances that lead to the serious bodily injury being inflicted on the person.
When the defendant is charged with battery causing serious bodily injury in violation of Penal Code section 243(d), the People must prove that:
1.The defendant willfully and unlawfully touched the complaining victim in a harmful or offensive manner;
- The victim suffered serious bodily injury as a result of the force used; and
3.The defendant did not act in self-defense or in defense of someone else or any other defense.
Willful – Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on purpose. It is not required that he or she intend to break the law, hurt someone else, or gain any advantage. Making contact with another person, including through his or her clothing, is enough to commit a battery.
Serious Bodily Injury – A serious bodily injury means a serious impairment of physical condition. Such an injury may include, but is not limited to: loss of consciousness, concussion, bone fracture, protracted loss or impairment of function of any bodily member or organ, a wound requiring extensive suturing, and serious disfigurement.
If you or your loved one is charged with committing a battery that caused serious bodily injury pursuant to Penal Code 243d, call Attorney Arthur Khachatourians for a defense consultation.