Heard: September 6, 2018. 
received and sworn to in the Suffolk County Division of the
Juvenile Court Department on May 25, 2016.
case was heard by Stephen M. Limon, J.
Jellison for the juvenile.
K. Anderson, Assistant District Attorney, for the
Present: Blake, Wendlandt, & McDonough, JJ.
case involves the application of the doctrine of transferred
intent to the crime of assault, which consists of two forms:
attempted battery and immediately threatened battery. In
Commonwealth v. Melton, 436 Mass. 291 (2002), the
Supreme Judicial Court applied the doctrine in connection
with the intent element of the attempted battery form of
assault. We address now whether the doctrine applies to the
intent element of the immediately threatened battery form of
assault. In particular, following a bench trial, a Juvenile
Court judge adjudicated the juvenile delinquent on one count
of assault by means of a dangerous weapon, G. L. c. 265,
§ 15B. On appeal, the juvenile contends the judge
found only that he intended to place one specific
victim in fear (as to whom there was no charge)
and improperly relied on the doctrine of transferred intent
to satisfy the intent element of the immediately threatened
battery form of assault with regard to two different
victims. Concluding that the doctrine of
transferred intent applies to the immediately threatened
battery form of assault, we affirm.
judge's underlying factual findings are not disputed. On
May 24, 2016, three high school students (B.H., A.R.,
B.H.'s friend, E) were having lunch at a restaurant near
their high school in Chelsea when the juvenile approached
them. The juvenile was wearing a Tennessee Titans hat, while
E was wearing a Chicago Bulls hat; the juvenile asked E to
which gang he belonged and told E to "take off" his
hat. B.H. testified that he understood the Bulls hat to
signify affiliation with the MS gang. The juvenile opened his
backpack, displaying a knife. A.R. saw the knife. The
juvenile left the restaurant, but remained immediately
outside the restaurant with four companions.
finishing lunch, B.H., A.R., and E left the restaurant
together and entered the park across the street, heading back
toward their high school. The juvenile followed them on his
bicycle, remaining approximately three meters behind the
boys. At some point, however, the juvenile passed the boys,
arrived at a small staircase in the park, and dismounted his
bicycle. As the boys approached the stairs, the juvenile
stopped them. He asked A.R. whether he knew the meaning of
the Bulls hat. A.R. replied that he did not. The juvenile
then instructed E to take off the Bulls hat, if he did not
want any trouble. Following the threat, the juvenile moved
behind B.H., A.R., and E, and pulled his backpack from his
back to his chest. The juvenile unzipped the backpack and
reached inside for the knife. A.R. again saw the knife, and
B.H. covered his hands with his sleeves to shield himself
from a possible weapon. B.H. and A.R. wrestled the backpack
away from the juvenile and ran to the high school.
juvenile was adjudicated delinquent on the charge of
assaulting B.H. by means of a dangerous weapon. At defense
counsel's request, the judge entered a continuance
without a finding until the juvenile's eighteenth
birthday. Under the terms of the continuance, if the
juvenile successfully completed the probationary period, the
matter would be dismissed, and the juvenile would not have a
record of delinquency as a result of the case. The juvenile
filed a timely notice of appeal. Approximately half way
through his probationary period, and while his appeal was
pending, the juvenile filed a motion to terminate probation,
which was allowed. Thereafter, the case was dismissed.
Commonwealth moved to dismiss the appeal as moot in view of
the continuance without a finding and the dismissal of the
underlying case. A ...