But was it charged?

Here’s an excellent example of how we can be right and wrong at the same time.

Yes, battery is the correct legal term for a beating, and this, no doubt, was taken directly from a police report.

But when I read this, all I could imagine was a crushed AAA lying in the gutter. Or maybe it was a nine-volt.

The problem is that battery has several meanings, and we can’t let double-entendre creep in unintentionally. In this case, someone was no doubt hurt, and yet our wording made it a laughing matter.

So what can we do next time? Here are some suggestions from class:

— Reported a case of battery

— Reported being battered

— Reported being beaten

None of those is perfect, but all are better than the original.

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