Recent events have led to a number of protests around the nation – some of which have turned violent. Although most protests have remained peaceful, there have been many instances of property damage. Los Angeles was not an exception – as thousands of people gathered in a number of places throughout the city. One of the individuals out supporting the cause was NBA star J.R. Smith, who was caught on camera assaulting another individual. The incident occurred in the Fairfax area. According to reports, Smith beat a man who allegedly damaged his vehicle during the protests. Video footage shows J.R. Smith – who is 6’6” and 225 pounds – repeatedly kicking a man on the floor. The footage shows several kicks landing in the head. Eventually, the victim rises to his feet to get away from the attack as Smith delivers a final blow to the head.
Some of Smith’s friends appear to ask people to “stop recording” and “respect [Smith’s] privacy.” After the victim hurries away, these individuals can be seen guiding Smith out of the area.
Smith later posted a video in which he admitted that he attacked the person who broke his window. He says that “one of these…white boys [that] didn’t know where he was going and broke [the window on the truck.]” He claims that his vehicle was parked in a residential area, away from the protests which were turning violent. He also states that he “chased him down” and attacked him.
In the video that Smith released, he claims that the incident was not a hate crime or associated with the victim’s race whatsoever. Rather, he claims that the attack was simply a reaction to the damage to his property.
Although many might argue that the attack was justified (due to the reckless property damage), it doesn’t change the fact that Smith had the intent to cause bodily harm to the individual who damaged.
Things brings up a number of issued. For example, could the victim sue for the harm caused by the incident? Typically, victims of assault and battery have the right to sue their attackers. If you were attacked in this incident or a similar incident, you might have grounds to pursue a personal injury claim. For more information about your right to pursue a claim, do not hesitate to seek legal assistance with the experts at our firm at your earliest convenience.
Downtown L.A. Law Group is a personal injury law firm with many years of experience handling all sorts of claims – always representing the rights of victims harmed by the negligence of other parties. If you would like our experienced assault and battery attorneys to evaluate your claim and provide you with the guidance that you need to hold the liable party accountable for the harm that you suffered, do not hesitate to contact us at your earliest convenience.
Understanding Assault and Battery
Without a doubt, victims who were attacked might have grounds to take legal action against their attacker. However, it is important that potential claimants have a thorough understanding of assault and battery. Assault consists of three elements: (1) an intentional threat to cause harm to another person; (2) the threat caused fear of actual harm; (3) the defendant/attacker had the ability to actually go through with the threat of harm. Battery, on the other hand, is defined as the actual physical contact between the attacker and the victim. Assault and battery is a crime – and the attacker could face criminal charges. However, the victim could also pursue civil action by filing a personal injury claim.
What Should You Do?
If you were victim of assault and battery, there are a number of things that you should do to protect your right to take legal action against your attacker. Consider the following recommendations:
- Contact the authorities immediately (you should file a police report and press charges against your attacker)
- Seek medical attention immediately (whether you need emergency transportation via ambulance, or you can get yourself to a hospital, do so as soon as possible)
- Take photos of any visible, physical injuries (both before and after any treatment)
- Speak to witnesses who were present (gather their contact information)
- Get the name of your attacker
- File an incident report with the appropriate entity (if the incident occurred on private property)
- Gather all relevant medical records
- Avoid speaking with any lawyer or insurance agent representing your attacker
- Seek legal assistance immediately (with an experienced assault and battery lawyer)
When you follow these suggestions, you are essentially gathering the tools necessary to take legal action against your attacker and fight for your rights. With the assistance of an experienced assault and battery lawyer, you might even be eligible to recover some sort of monetary compensation for the harm that you suffered.
The Recovery of Monetary Compensation
Depending on the details surrounding your attack and any potential harm that you suffered, you might have grounds to recover monetary compensation upon a successful claim outcome. Some victims of assault and battery who have pursued successful personal injury claims have recovered the following categories of compensation:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Loss of consortium
- Funeral and burial costs
- Punitive damages
There is no guarantee regarding the type and amount of compensation that you could recover. The compensation available for recovery will always be based on the details surrounding your claim. Therefore, it is essential that you discuss your claim with experienced lawyers as soon as possible. Our assault and battery attorneys are ready to aggressively fight for your right to recover the compensation that you are owed. For more information about the type and amount of compensation that you could be awarded, do not hesitate to contact the experts at our law firm at your earliest convenience.
File Your Claim on Time
Although the circumstances surrounding your incident might result in the right to sue, it is possible to lose the right to sue based on failure to file your claim on time. All claims, including assault and battery claims, are subject to a statute of limitations. A statute of limitations determines the specific length of time that claimants have to sue; if claims are not filed within the time allowed by the statute of limitations, they could lose their right to sue. In California, assault and battery claims are typically subject to a two-year statute of limitations, which means that victims only have two years to file their claims. In cases that involve government entities (i.e. the assault and battery included a city agency), claims must be filed within six months. To ensure that you file your claim within the time allowed by the applicable statute of limitations, do not hesitate to contact our firm as soon as possible.
Contact Downtown L.A. Law Group Today
Assault and battery could result in significant harm, including but not limited to broken bones, neck/back injuries, spinal cord injuries, and even internal injuries. Regardless of the specific harm that you suffered, you might have grounds to pursue a civil claim against your attacker. If you would like to learn more about your right to file an assault and battery claim against the person or entity liable for the harm that you suffered, do not hesitate to contact our firm at your earliest convenience. The knowledgeable lawyers at our firm are ready to provide you with the guidance that you need to fight for your right to be justly compensated.
At Downtown L.A. Law Group, our lawyers are committed to providing you with the legal assistance that you need to pursue your claim. Our firm offers free legal services, which include free consultations and free second opinions. During our free consultations and free second opinions, our experienced attorneys will provide you with absolutely all the information that you need to either start or continue your claim. If you are ready to benefit from our free legal services, do not hesitate to contact us at your earliest convenience.
Our firm offers a Zero-Fee guarantee which ensures that our clients will never be required to pay any upfront legal expenses for our legal services. Because our firm is also based on contingency, our clients will not be required to pay anything until reaching a successful claim outcome. If you are ready to discuss your assault and battery incident with the experts at our firm, do not hesitate to contact us at your earliest convenience.
Our lawyers are not afraid to hold an NBA star accountable for their actions. We will fight alongside you to ensure that you are rightfully compensated for the harm that you suffered.