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Etymology: L, assilirere, to leap upon
1 an unlawful act that places another person, without that person's consent, in fear of immediate bodily harm or battery.
2 the act of committing an assault.
3 to threaten a person with bodily harm or injury. See battery.


The unlawful placing of an individual in apprehension of immediate bodily harm without his or her consent.


Forensic medicine The unlawful placing of an individual in apprehension of immediate bodily harm without his/her consent. See Sexual assault, Nonsexual genital assault.

assault/interpersonal violence

A social act involving a serious abuse of power, consisting of the exertion of physical force and power over another individual with the intent of controlling, disempowering and/or injuring that individual. See Domestic violence.


n an intentional, unlawful offer of bodily injury to another by force or unlawfully directing force toward another person to create a reasonable fear of imminent danger, coupled with the apparent ability to do the harm threatened if not prevented. A completed assault is a battery. In a medical setting, the unconsented touching of the body would be an assault and battery.

Patient discussion about assault

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More discussions about assault
References in periodicals archive ?
Tropea pleaded not guilty to assault causing bodily harm, but guilty to common assault.
Jeter, 33, denies two charges of assault causing bodily harm.
A MOTHER and daughter have been given 26-week jail terms, suspended for two years, after admitting assault causing bodily harm.
She had been found guilty of assault causing bodily harm on Veronica Sandeman, false imprisonment and threatening to kill.
At his latest hearing, the 28-year-old, of Lovaine Place, North Shields, admitted assault causing bodily harm in June.
Mr Lawson was asked to attend a police station, arrested and had his fingerprints and DNA sample taken, before being interviewed and bailed on suspicion of assault causing bodily harm.
Now he has now been found not guilty of assault causing bodily harm after Mr Spoor failed to turn up to give evidence before a Newcastle Crown Court jury.
Forster, 39, of Allendale Road, Farringdon, Sunderland, is accused of attacking the couple, leaving Miss Henderson with a black eye for her big day and permanent problems with her vision, when they turned up at his home to confront Mrs Miller, but denies assault causing bodily harm and causing grievous bodily harm.
Harrison was locked up in a young offender institution for 18 months after he admitted two charges of assault causing bodily harm.