Criminal Law (LLB) - Battery

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Is the definition of battery set out in statute or case law? What statute relates to battery in what way?
The definition is set out in case law. S.39 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 does not give the definition but states the offence is a statutory offence and sets the maximum sentence.
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What is the actus reus of battery?
The infliction of unlawful personal violence on the victim.
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How may a defendant inflict unlawful personal violence? Give case law.
Through conduct. The case of Fagan v MPC held that battery must be committed through a positive act not an omission. However in DPP v K and Santana-Bermudez the D's were found guilty on their failure to act. No Supreme Court guidance has been given.
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The infliction of violence must be unlawful (ie no defence applies) give a case confirming this.
Kenlin v Gardiner - in this case a PC caught hold of a boy in order to detain him for questioning, not to arrest. This was held to be unlawful.
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Will everyday touching amount to unlawful application of force? Give a case example.
Generally it won't. In the case of McMillan v CPS the PC did not assault a drunk female when he led her from a garden down some steep steps into the street. In such cases implied consent operates to render the defendant's conduct lawful.
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There are however limitations to implied consent. Give a case example.
H v CPS -in this case it was held that teachers in special needs school do not impliedly consent to battery from their pupils, despite it being more common than in mainstream schools.
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What does personal mean? Give a case example.
It means the infliction must be upon the victim's body and clothes that they are wearing. The victim doesn't need to feel the touch. In R v Thomas (obiter) that battery could occur where
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Question continued...
the defendant touched the bottom of the victim's skirt and rubbed it.
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What does violence mean? Give a case example.
Violence can mean any unlawful touching however slight (Cole v Turner). There must be some physical touching (Ireland;Burstow) but there is no requirement of an injury. Spitting or throwing water at the victim will suffice.
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What does inflict mean? Give case example.
Inflict means to cause and both factual and legal causation must be established. Haystead v CC of Derbyshire - in this case the defendant hit a woman twice which caused her to drop the baby she was holding. Held: injury to baby reasonable forseeable
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Question continued...
consequence of the defendant's battery on the woman.
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What is the mens rea of battery? Give case authority.
The intention or recklessness to inflict unlawful personal violence on the victim. (R v Venna)
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What case confirmed that Subjective recklessness should be used in the mens rea of battery?
R v Spratt. (Also Savage;Parmenter as in assault).
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Card 2

Front

What is the actus reus of battery?

Back

The infliction of unlawful personal violence on the victim.

Card 3

Front

How may a defendant inflict unlawful personal violence? Give case law.

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

The infliction of violence must be unlawful (ie no defence applies) give a case confirming this.

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Will everyday touching amount to unlawful application of force? Give a case example.

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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