Arguments often go in very strange and violent directions. One of the worst places they can go is towards physical assault. And, oddly enough, slapping the phone out of a person's hand to get them to focus on you during an argument may be assault. That said, you may still be able to frame a plausible defense against it.
Assault Has Many Definitions
Assault is not limited in its scope to just serious physical acts. Instead, it is intentionally broad to encompass as many dangerous actions as possible. For example, a person slapping a phone out of another person's hand during an argument may be considered assault. It's an unlawful touching of an individual against their will and is done with violence.
That said, a person has to be in fear during this event to make it count as assault. In many instances, a person slapping a phone out of another person's hand may cause a frightened reaction. However, it is possible to prove that the person was not afraid at the time or that the action was not enough to cause serious fear.
Fear Has to Be Present for Assault to Stick
Fear is defined legally as the belief that a person is going to come to some kind of harm due to the actions of another. For example, slapping the phone out of a person's hand may lead them to believe that you want to isolate them from the outside world to do harm to them. Or it may make them think that you plan on attacking them physically after that act.
That kind of fear is often hard to prove in a legal setting and is typically showcased by either testifying about the anxiety it caused, having another person testify about it for you, or getting a psychologist to showcase you suffer from anxiety because of the event. In this scenario, the person who slapped the phone may still be able to build a defense.
Defending in This Case
The defendant may try to claim that the plaintiff is exaggerating about the fear that they felt. This tactic is often hard to prove unless you have somebody to testify that the plaintiff either didn't take the situation seriously or laughed it off at the time.
It is probably easier to argue a self-defense case (i.e., the plaintiff was calling people to come over and attack you). Therefore, slapping the phone out of their hand was a way of protecting yourself from injury and is allowed in this type of situation.
So, if you are either the defendant or the plaintiff in this case, and you want to ensure that you win, talk to a personal injury attorney right away. Assault cases of this type are considered personal injury, even if you didn't get seriously hurt, and require the use of a skilled attorney to win. To learn more, talk to professionals like Shay & Associates.