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California Penal Code Section 243

Legal Research Home > California Laws > Penal Code > California Penal Code Section 243

243.  (a) A battery is punishable by a fine not exceeding two
thousand dollars ($2,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not
exceeding six months, or by both that fine and imprisonment.
   (b) When a battery is committed against the person of a peace
officer, custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical
technician, lifeguard, security officer, custody assistant, process
server, traffic officer, code enforcement officer, animal control
officer, or search and rescue member engaged in the performance of
his or her duties, whether on or off duty, including when the peace
officer is in a police uniform and is concurrently performing the
duties required of him or her as a peace officer while also employed
in a private capacity as a part-time or casual private security guard
or patrolman, or a nonsworn employee of a probation department
engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off
duty, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical
care outside a hospital, clinic, or other health care facility, and
the person committing the offense knows or reasonably should know
that the victim is a peace officer, custodial officer, firefighter,
emergency medical technician, lifeguard, security officer, custody
assistant, process server, traffic officer, code enforcement officer,
animal control officer, or search and rescue member engaged in the
performance of his or her duties, nonsworn employee of a probation
department, or a physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency
medical care, the battery is punishable by a fine not exceeding two
thousand dollars ($2,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not
exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.
   (c) (1) When a battery is committed against a custodial officer,
firefighter, emergency medical technician, lifeguard, process server,
traffic officer, or animal control officer engaged in the
performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, or a
nonsworn employee of a probation department engaged in the
performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, or a
physician or nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care
outside a hospital, clinic, or other health care facility, and the
person committing the offense knows or reasonably should know that
the victim is a nonsworn employee of a probation department,
custodial officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician,
lifeguard, process server, traffic officer, or animal control officer
engaged in the performance of his or her duties, or a physician or
nurse engaged in rendering emergency medical care, and an injury is
inflicted on that victim, the battery is punishable by a fine of not
more than two thousand dollars ($2,000), by imprisonment in a county
jail not exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment,
or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16
months, or two or three years.
   (2) When the battery specified in paragraph (1) is committed
against a peace officer engaged in the performance of his or her
duties, whether on or off duty, including when the peace officer is
in a police uniform and is concurrently performing the duties
required of him or her as a peace officer while also employed in a
private capacity as a part-time or casual private security guard or
patrolman and the person committing the offense knows or reasonably
should know that the victim is a peace officer engaged in the
performance of his or her duties, the battery is punishable by a fine
of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment
in a county jail not exceeding one year or pursuant to subdivision
(h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years, or by both
that fine and imprisonment.
   (d) When a battery is committed against any person and serious
bodily injury is inflicted on the person, the battery is punishable
by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or
imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for two,
three, or four years.
   (e) (1) When a battery is committed against a spouse, a person
with whom the defendant is cohabiting, a person who is the parent of
the defendant's child, former spouse, fiance, or fiancee, or a person
with whom the defendant currently has, or has previously had, a
dating or engagement relationship, the battery is punishable by a
fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by imprisonment
in a county jail for a period of not more than one year, or by both
that fine and imprisonment. If probation is granted, or the execution
or imposition of the sentence is suspended, it shall be a condition
thereof that the defendant participate in, for no less than one year,
and successfully complete, a batterer's treatment program, as
described in Section 1203.097, or if none is available, another
appropriate counseling program designated by the court. However, this
provision shall not be construed as requiring a city, a county, or a
city and county to provide a new program or higher level of service
as contemplated by Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
Constitution.
   (2) Upon conviction of a violation of this subdivision, if
probation is granted, the conditions of probation may include, in
lieu of a fine, one or both of the following requirements:
   (A) That the defendant make payments to a battered women's
shelter, up to a maximum of five thousand dollars ($5,000).
   (B) That the defendant reimburse the victim for reasonable costs
of counseling and other reasonable expenses that the court finds are
the direct result of the defendant's offense.
   For any order to pay a fine, make payments to a battered women's
shelter, or pay restitution as a condition of probation under this
subdivision, the court shall make a determination of the defendant's
ability to pay. In no event shall any order to make payments to a
battered women's shelter be made if it would impair the ability of
the defendant to pay direct restitution to the victim or
court-ordered child support. If the injury to a married person is
caused in whole or in part by the criminal acts of his or her spouse
in violation of this section, the community property shall not be
used to discharge the liability of the offending spouse for
restitution to the injured spouse, required by Section 1203.04, as
operative on or before August 2, 1995, or Section 1202.4, or to a
shelter for costs with regard to the injured spouse and dependents,
required by this section, until all separate property of the
offending spouse is exhausted.
   (3) Upon conviction of a violation of this subdivision, if
probation is granted or the execution or imposition of the sentence
is suspended and the person has been previously convicted of a
violation of this subdivision and sentenced under paragraph (1), the
person shall be imprisoned for not less than 48 hours in addition to
the conditions in paragraph (1). However, the court, upon a showing
of good cause, may elect not to impose the mandatory minimum
imprisonment as required by this subdivision and may, under these
circumstances, grant probation or order the suspension of the
execution or imposition of the sentence.
   (4) The Legislature finds and declares that these specified crimes
merit special consideration when imposing a sentence so as to
display society's condemnation for these crimes of violence upon
victims with whom a close relationship has been formed.
   (5) If a peace officer makes an arrest for a violation of
paragraph (1) of subdivision (e) of this section, the peace officer
is not required to inform the victim of his or her right to make a
citizen's arrest pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 836.
   (f) As used in this section:
   (1) "Peace officer" means any person defined in Chapter 4.5
(commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2.
   (2) "Emergency medical technician" means a person who is either an
EMT-I, EMT-II, or EMT-P (paramedic), and possesses a valid
certificate or license in accordance with the standards of Division
2.5 (commencing with Section 1797) of the Health and Safety Code.
   (3) "Nurse" means a person who meets the standards of Division 2.5
(commencing with Section 1797) of the Health and Safety Code.
   (4) "Serious bodily injury" means a serious impairment of physical
condition, including, but not limited to, the following: loss of
consciousness; concussion; bone fracture; protracted loss or
impairment of function of any bodily member or organ; a wound
requiring extensive suturing; and serious disfigurement.
   (5) "Injury" means any physical injury which requires professional
medical treatment.
   (6) "Custodial officer" means any person who has the
responsibilities and duties described in Section 831 and who is
employed by a law enforcement agency of any city or county or who
performs those duties as a volunteer.
   (7) "Lifeguard" means a person defined in paragraph (5) of
subdivision (d) of Section 241.
   (8) "Traffic officer" means any person employed by a city, county,
or city and county to monitor and enforce state laws and local
ordinances relating to parking and the operation of vehicles.
   (9) "Animal control officer" means any person employed by a city,
county, or city and county for purposes of enforcing animal control
laws or regulations.
   (10) "Dating relationship" means frequent, intimate associations
primarily characterized by the expectation of affectional or sexual
involvement independent of financial considerations.
   (11) (A) "Code enforcement officer" means any person who is not
described in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of
Part 2 and who is employed by any governmental subdivision, public or
quasi-public corporation, public agency, public service corporation,
any town, city, county, or municipal corporation, whether
incorporated or chartered, who has enforcement authority for health,
safety, and welfare requirements, and whose duties include
enforcement of any statute, rules, regulations, or standards, and who
is authorized to issue citations, or file formal complaints.
   (B) "Code enforcement officer" also includes any person who is
employed by the Department of Housing and Community Development who
has enforcement authority for health, safety, and welfare
requirements pursuant to the Employee Housing Act (Part 1 (commencing
with Section 17000) of Division 13 of the Health and Safety Code);
the State Housing Law (Part 1.5 (commencing with Section 17910) of
Division 13 of the Health and Safety Code); the Manufactured Housing
Act of 1980 (Part 2 (commencing with Section 18000) of Division 13 of
the Health and Safety Code); the Mobilehome Parks Act (Part 2.1
(commencing with Section 18200) of Division 13 of the Health and
Safety Code); and the Special Occupancy Parks Act (Part 2.3
(commencing with Section 18860) of Division 13 of the Health and
Safety Code).
   (12) "Custody assistant" means any person who has the
responsibilities and duties described in Section 831.7 and who is
employed by a law enforcement agency of any city, county, or city and
county.
   (13) "Search and rescue member" means any person who is part of an
organized search and rescue team managed by a government agency.
   (14) "Security officer" means any person who has the
responsibilities and duties described in Section 831.4 and who is
employed by a law enforcement agency of any city, county, or city and
county.
   (g) It is the intent of the Legislature by amendments to this
section at the 1981-82 and 1983-84 Regular Sessions to abrogate the
holdings in cases such as People v. Corey, 21 Cal. 3d 738, and
Cervantez v. J.C. Penney Co., 24 Cal. 3d 579, and to reinstate prior
judicial interpretations of this section as they relate to criminal
sanctions for battery on peace officers who are employed, on a
part-time or casual basis, while wearing a police uniform as private
security guards or patrolmen and to allow the exercise of peace
officer powers concurrently with that employment.

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Last modified: March 17, 2014