On the afternoon of Monday, November 25th, deputies responded to a call on Grape Lilly Circle in Newhall. According to reports, a verbal argument broke out between the suspect and the victim, which quickly escalated into a physical altercation when the suspect started punching the victim in the face. The victim, a 50-year-old man, fell to the ground under the assault.
Upon their arrival, deputies began investigating the incident and arrested the suspect, 25-year-old M. Ramos, on a felony charge of battery with great bodily injury. He was taken to the Santa Clarita Sheriff Station to undergo booking and processing and was being held in lieu of $20,000 bail.
Battery is covered under California Penal Code 242 PC and is described as any willful and unlawful use of force or violence against someone else. However, when a person is seriously injured as a result of a person committing battery, the crime is charged under California Penal Code 243(d) PC – battery causing serious bodily injury. While sometimes referred to as “aggravated battery,” the crime occurs when one person willfully touches another in a harmful or offensive manner and the person being touched suffers severe bodily injury as a result.
For example, suppose a person is attempting to break into a home when they are spotted by the resident who then starts to scream. In a panic, the would-be burglar grabs the resident and puts his hand over their mouth in an effort to stifle their screams. During the ensuing scuffle, the resident sprains their wrist. Since the resident was injured, it’s possible that the suspect may be charged with battery causing serious bodily injury.
It’s important to note that “serious bodily injury” doesn’t mean that the injury is life-threatening, or even that it’s particularly serious as injuries go. Generally, serious bodily injury occurs when someone receives a significant wound or injury, such as a bruise, broken bone, pulled muscle, or something else.
Aggravated battery is a “wobbler” in California, meaning that it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. If charged as a misdemeanor the possible penalties include up to 1 year in county jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. If charged as a felony, the potential penalties include 2 to 4 years in county jail and/or a fine of up to $10,000.