Articles Tagged with assault

alex-holyoake-202959-copy-300x200A number of legal issues arise when an employee of a company commits assault on one of its customers. The lines of liability can be blurred, not least because the crime occurs on a business premises. Moreover, the employees are deemed to be working on behalf of their company during office hours. A distinction has to be made between the personal liability of the employee and the corporate liability of the employer. A good lawyer is the key to success in any case.

The first critical consideration is that the employee who has committed the assault is criminally liable for those ctions. When it comes to the civil cases, the employer may be asked to compensate the customer for any demonstrated injuries. Such was a case when a number of ex-bouncers admitted to assaulting customers in a club based within the Chelmsford area of Chicago.

Case Study of Employees Who Commit Assault During Business Hours

Hilulaohaio-225x300Chicago has sought to deal with the increasing problem of hate crime using legislative means. The provisions of the Illinois Hate Crime Act (IHCA), 720 ILCS 5/12-7.1, are the leading authority on the management of the criminal process. The act creates an imperative on the state to prosecute but does not explicitly remove the opportunity for private civil cases to take place. Many victims take the opportunity to sue for damages, even when the aggressor is a public authority or their representatives. The range of options for the court includes actual damages, punitive damages, and additional costs, including attorney fees. At other times, the court may offer injunctive relief in order to stop the offending behavior from happening.

The criteria for what constitutes a hate crime can be fluid and those who offend have often used the ambiguity of definitions in order to attempt a get-out-clause for their behavior. Typically, they will claim that this is a case of freedom of speech, which is constitutionally guaranteed. For those who actually go on to commit acts of violence, the case is much simpler since the prosecutor can go for the assault line of questioning and later prove that hate-inspired motives were at play. A crime becomes a hate crime when it is motivated by perceived creed, race, color, gender, ancestry, religion, sexual orientation, disability, nationality and even membership of a particular group. Bigotry is at the heart of this crime and will be part of the Mens Rea during the prosecution.

The Importance of the Motivating Factors

DSC_0041Criminal assault and battery, in most jurisdictions, is defined as an intentional act where one individual attempts to or does strike another individual; or acts in such a threatening manner as to place an individual in immediate fear of harm. Aggravated assault and battery is when an individual causes severe injury to another, often through the use of a deadly weapon.

Although “assault and battery” are related, under Illinois law they are two separate and distinct criminal offenses. State prosecutors may charge these two offenses separately, however, in order for a prosecutor to prosecute on a charge of battery, he must also prove the elements of an “assault.”

An assault is the attempt to injure another person through threats or threatening behavior. It is viewed as an attempted battery, but is distinguished from an actual battery in that no contact is necessary for the assault. Wherein, in a case of “battery,” the prosecutor must prove that the defendant caused bodily harm to his victim. Illinois state law requires that for a charge of aggravated battery, the defendant must have used a firearm, or some other deadly weapon, or caused harm to a child or a law enforcement officer.

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There is a safeguard under our First Amendment for political protests. However, that safeguard does not extend to protests that lead to assault and battery (or worse) of other protesters, passersby, police officers, or news reporters.

Most recently, during a political rally in Chicago, for one of the Republican candidates, Donald Trump, a protest erupted. Thousands of protesters and the candidate’s supporters faced off in what started as a mere disagreement in campaign policies and slogans and ended in a “free for all.” In the aftermath of the protests, four people were arrested. One of the protesters faces one count of felony aggravated battery against a police officer and five misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest. If his main purpose for attending the rally was to go to jail, then he succeeded.

McDonald's
On the rise, and all across the nation, patrons of fast-food eateries are waging war against these establishments in the form of criminal activity; actually they are engaging in fast-food fights with the establishments’ workers over errors in food orders, etc., and sometimes just because they want to fight an easy target. The mistake in the order just may be the excuse.

These occurrences have become equivalent to “off” road rage as patrons, looking for their favorite fast-food burger, chicken nuggets, or breakfast meal deal have taken to attacking and assaulting fast-food workers over disputes about their abilities to “have it their way.” What is the psychology behind this? Is this a natural phenomenon amongst people who frequent fast-food restaurants and if so, what is causing it?

Is it the Food or Something Else?