Two 19-year-old idiots, one of which was allegedly drunk, were arrested and charged with assault after they approached an 11-year-old girl and punched her in the stomach. Why were they beating children? The gentlemen wanted her Lollapalooza beach ball, reports the Chicago Tribune.
The girl, and her mother Michelle Fiore were headed back to their car when they were approached by a group of four individuals, two male and two female. Fiore said they appeared to be bickering before Conrad Slimak approached them and asked for one of their souvenir beach balls.
Fiore jokingly responded, "That will be $50."
That seemed to enrage Mr. Slimak, who stated, "I'm a college student. Does it look like I have money?" He then groped for the ball, which Fiore's daughter was holding close. Slimak allegedly punched the girl in her stomach during the struggle, perhaps as a way of loosening her grip.
The mother alerted nearby officers, who took Conrad Slimak into custody and charged him with misdemeanor assault and battery, plus intoxication of a minor. The Sun-Times is reporting that his unnamed male companion was also charged with assault. The victim was not seriously injured.
Assault, contrary to popular misuse of the term, is not the actual hitting of the victim. It is the conduct that puts the victim in fear of being hit. This is why the Slimak's friend, who reportedly did not hit the child, was still charged with assault. It's a relatively minor offense that carries a maximum of 30 days, plus a fine and community service.
The actual punch, on the other hand, constitutes battery. Though still a misdemeanor charge, this carries up to a year in jail, plus fines.
The cost of a beach ball, on the other hand, is only $1 online for a basic ball and $4 for a sparkly light-up ball.
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