The response from the attorney was that the allegations were of assault. However, the victim stated that Mr. Baldwin punched him and made physical contact with his face after the paparazzo tried to take a photo of Mr. Baldwin and his fiancé Hilaria Thomas leaving a New York City Marriage License Bureau. Legally, there is a difference between assault and battery.
An assault is only a threat. It is the threat of use of force that causes a person to have a reasonable apprehension of imminent harmful or offensive contact. In contrast, a battery is the use of force against another resulting in harmful or offensive contact. A battery can be aggravated, such as when using a deadly weapon, sexual in nature, or a simple battery as defined above.