Something like shoving might not seem to be a big deal to you, but according to the California law, it is considered both an assault and a battery. As per California Penal Code 240 (assault) and California Penal Code 242 (battery), shoving someone is against the law. Shoving someone is considered to be an attempt to harm them, or used to apply force to the victim. A shove can be viewed as unjustified force, and it can be viewed as one trying to harm another individual. In California, a simple battery or assault charge counts as a misdemeanor; this can lead the guilty party to serve up to 6 months in jail.
California Penal Code 240 protects us in the case that someone uses force or violence against someone else. It is considered an assault when there is an attempt to harm someone. California Penal Code 242 comes in play when there is actual force or violence used toward someone else. The difference in these two charges is that one focuses on the attempt to harm (assault) and the other focuses on the actual use of violence (battery).
When it comes to California Penal Code 240 for assaults, keep in mind that any physical contact that is done in an offensive or rude way, can count as an assault. An assault also does not mean one person against another person; an assault can also occur when an object or item is used to touch another person in a harmful manner. Therefore, in the case of shoving, any type of push is considered an assault when it is meant to harm another individual. It does not have to be a hard shove, and you do not need to sustain injuries for it to be considered an assault. Remember that an assault here refers to “the attempt” to use violence and/or use harm against another.
As mentioned, an assault charge under the California Penal Code 240 is considered a misdemeanor and it is punishable by a fine and/or jail time. The maximum for jail time is 6 months in county jail and the maximum fine would be $1000.