Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon

The crime of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon has several sub-components in Massachusetts. The law is set out in Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 265 Section 15A. To convict someone of this crime the district attorney must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  1. The defendant touched someone else, however slightly and that he did so without an excuse or the right to do so;
  2. The touching was intentional, not by accident or with negligence;
  3. The touching was done with a dangerous weapon.

There is not need for the government to prove that the defendant intended to cause any injury nor does the prosecutor have to prove that the defendant actually did cause injury with the dangerous weapon. Any slight touching is sufficient, as long as it was done with a dangerous weapon. Just about anything qualifies as a dangerous weapon so long as the district attorney proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the instrument was used as a weapon in a dangerous or potentially dangerous fashion. As examples, pencils or pens can be dangerous weapons. Broomsticks, flashlights, lighted cigarettes and chairs have in some instances qualified as dangerous weapons. On the other hand, there are certain weapons that are considered inherently dangerous and these do not have to be used in a dangerous fashion. Inherently dangerous weapons include firearms, switch blades, brass knuckles, and other items as defined under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 269 Section 10(a) and 10(b).

If you are convicted of committing an assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon you can be sentenced for up to 10 years in prison if the case is prosecuted in the superior court or 2½ years in a county house of correction if the case is kept in the district court.

Other components of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon are as follows:

  • If you commit a second offense assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon on a person sixty years or older there is a minimum mandatory 2 year jail sentence;
  • If you commit an assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon on someone and in doing so cause serious bodily injury there is a potential 15 year prison sentence;
  • If you commit an assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon on a pregnant person there is a potential 15 year prison sentence provided however that you knew or had reason to know that the victim was pregnant;
  • If you commit an assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon on someone who has a restraining order against you there is a possible 15 year prison sentence, provided you knew of the existence of the restraining order;
  • If the defendant is 17 and the victim is under the age of 14 he or she faces is a possible 15 year prison sentence if convicted.

The Law Offices of Stephen Neyman is committed to defending anyone accused of committing a crime in Massachusetts and throughout the country. We have been defending violent crimes for over 20 years with great success. Call our office at 617-263-6800 or contact us online to discuss your violent crime case.

Case Results » Assault and Battery By Means of a Dangerous Weapon
  • Essex Superior Court: Two Felony Charges Continued Without a Finding in Superior Court

    On January 31, 2018 Marblehead Police Officers responded to a call for a man threatening his parents with a knife. The reporting party was the defendant's stepfather who told the police that after an argument the defendant threatened him with a knife and strangled him. His wife, the defendant's mother tried to intervene and was tased in the process. Among other things the defendant was charged with assault and battery dangerous weapon, G.L. c. 265 Section 15A and strangulation, G.L. c. 265 Section 15D. Today, Attorney Neyman succeeded in getting these charges continued without a finding, a rare result in the superior court.

    Read More in Strangulation

  • West Roxbury District Court: Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon Charges do not Issue After Clerk Magistrate Hearing

    On September 9, 2017 members of the Boston Police Department were dispatched to a residence after an emergency call for a fight. Upon arrival officers were met by the victim who claimed that after a heated dispute our client attacked him with a knife. There were visible injuries consistent with the victim's story. Rather than issue an arrest warrant the police opted to file an application for a criminal complaint charging the defendant with assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon in violation of G.L. c. 265 Section 15A. Attorney Stephen Neyman was hired to represent the defendant. Today, after a clerk magistrate hearing no complaint issued.

    Read More in Violent Crimes

  • Cambridge District Court: Felony Charges Continued Without a Finding For Three Days

    The defendant is an out of state resident who will be attending graduate school in the fall. In mid-July of this year she was waiting in line at a nightclub with a friend hoping to get into the establishment. Her friend was verbally assaulted by a patron. The woman defended her friend and complained to the bouncer. The bouncer then refused to permit the defendant to enter the club. She then kicked the bouncer with her heals. The police were called and the woman was arrested and charged with assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, shod foot in violation of G.L. c. 265 Section 15A. Attorney Neyman was hired to defend the woman. Today, he convinced the judge, over the objection of the prosecutor to continue the case without a finding for three days. On Thursday the case will be dismissed.

    Read More in Violent Crimes

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In less than two months Stephen Neyman got my old conviction vacated. I now have no criminal record. Paul W. Boston, Massachusetts