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Battery 720 ILCS 5/12-3


In Illinois, a person commits battery if he or she knowingly and without legal justification by any means:

(1) Causes bodily harm to an individual; OR

(2) Makes physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with an individual.

It doesn't take much to be charged with battery in Illinois. It is not necessary that you harmed or injured another person. Merely making contact with another person is enough to be charged with battery. For example, a battery conviction in DuPage County was upheld where the defendant's knee touched the back of the person sitting in front of him. (See People v. Rosario 397 Ill.App.3d 332). In Macon County, a felony aggravated battery conviction was upheld where the defendant poked a teacher in the chest and knocked papers out of her hands (see People v. Dunker, 217 Ill.App.3d 410).


Battery is a Class A misdemeanor, meaning you could be sentenced to 1 year in jail if you are found guilty. There are several elements that can make battery a felony offense, such as your criminal history and injuries caused to the other person.

If you plead or are found guilty of causing bodily harm to another person, you will not be given good time credit for any jail time you are ordered to serve. (730 ILCS 130/3(1)). If you were ordered to serve 30 days in jail for a battery that caused bodily harm, you must serve an actual 30 days, you would not be released in 15 days.

If you have been charged with battery, it is important that you consult with an attorney to determine the best strategy based on the circumstances of your case.

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