Domestic violence in California is defined in Penal Code section 273.5 as follows:
(a) Any person who willfully inflicts upon a person who is his or her spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or the mother or father of his or her child, corporal injury resulting in a traumatic condition, is guilty of a felony, and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or four years, or in a county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine of up to six thousand dollars ($6,000) or by both that fine and imprisonment.
What does this mean? If one person touches another person with whom he or she has a relationship, and leaves some kind of mark (bruising or even redness), he or she can be charged with domestic violence. If the police are called (and they frequently are out of anger) and a mark exists on one person, the other person almost surely will be arrested. Although this code section applies to spouses, former spouses, and persons with whom you have lived or with whom you have a child, you may also be charged with domestic violence if you have or had a dating relationship with the other involved person.
A conviction in California for domestic violence requires, at a minimum, completion of a 52-week “batterers treatment” class, fines, fees, restraining orders, and loss of the right to carry a firearm for 10 years. Prosecutors almost always want jail time or community service as well. The sentence will depend on the facts of the criminal law case.
If you are charged or suspect you will be charged with domestic violence seek the advice of an Orange County domestic violence attorney immediately. Many times these cases arise from false allegations, in child custody disputes, divorce proceedings, or simply because one person is angry with the other and called the police. It may also be important for your accuser to hire his or her own lawyer to advise of their rights, duties and obligation. Frequently accusers change their minds about criminal charges. In such a case it is important that they hire a lawyer to help them through the criminal process.
Domestic Violence Law And Charges In California
Domestic violence law in California is complicated due to how it can be classified within the area of criminal offenses. Domestic violence can be charged and punished in various ways depending on the circumstances involving a case. The prosecution in a domestic violence case will look into many factors, including the relationship of the individuals involved, the location of the arrest, and prior criminal history of the accused. Domestic violence can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. However, serious incidents will be charged as a felony. If you have been charged with domestic violence, it is imperative that you seek a domestic violence attorney in Orange, CA right away. Domestic violence charges can escalate, and if you do not have professional representation by an Orange, CA domestic violence attorney, you could be facing extensive penalties, fines, jail time, and a criminal conviction.
Common Types Of Domestic Violence Charges
Criminal convictions on domestic violence charges are serious. There are different penal codes in California that detail various types of domestic violence offenses a person can be charged with. For instance, Penal Code Section 273.5 highlights the most common type of domestic violence offense. Under Penal Code Section 273.5, an accused person can be charged with domestic violence for inflicting injury on a spouse, cohabitant, fellow parent, or person with whom the accused has or has had an intimate relationship. Moreover, the person who suffered at the accuser’s hand must display corporal injury resulting in a traumatic condition.
Under Penal Code Section 243(e), an accused person could be charged with a domestic violence offense if he or she committed a battery on a spouse, cohabitant, parent, or person with who the accused has or has had an intimate relationship. Domestic violence law states that battery offenses are misdemeanor charges.
Penal Code Section 245 details one of the more serious domestic violence charges that exist in California. Under this code, the charge is a felony. However, section 245 is not only limited to domestic violence cases. A person who commits an assault on another person with a deadly weapon or instrument that runs the risk of producing great bodily injury can be charged under section 245. This type of offense is a felony, and it can be counted as a strike under California’s Three Strikes Law. If a defendant is convicted under this section, the penalties and punishment are extremely harsh. The sentencing is much more enhanced compared to a lesser felony conviction.
If you have been accused of domestic violence under any of these sections, it is crucial that you enlist a domestic violence attorney in Orange, CA to help defend your case. Most domestic violence charges are wobblers, which means that the charges can be reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor with the right defense. However, if you have been wrongly accused of domestic violence offense, an aggressive Orange, CA domestic violence attorney can help get you exonerated from your charges. At The Law Office Of Edward R. Flores, we have years of experience defending our clients’ rights. We have the expertise and resources to ensure our clients’ unparalleled representation.
Domestic Violence Misdemeanor And Felony Charges
Under domestic violence law, domestic violence can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending upon the type of offense. Domestic violence crimes that are less serious occurrences may be charged as a misdemeanor. If a defendant is initially charged with an offense that is considered a wobbler, that charge can be reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor. However, to make sure that charges get reduced, it is highly advised to consult with a domestic violence attorney in Orange, CA to assess how your charges can get reduced or even dismissed.
In many cases in California, the accused will be charged on suspicion of corporal injury, which is a violation under Penal Code Section 273.5. Section 273.5 is a wobbler offense, and it can be reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor. However, the district attorney will decide what level to charge. If there are injuries or a history of domestic violence, instead of a reduction, the defendant can get the charges increased. It is vital to consult with an Orange, CA domestic violence attorney as soon as possible if you have been arrested and charged with domestic violence.
As previously mentioned, domestic violence charges can escalate. Depending on the offense, you could end up with serious felony charges and strikes that count toward California’s Three Strike Law. An offense that involves a deadly weapon can be considered a strike and magnify a current and future conviction.
An arrest for domestic violence is serious. You could be facing hefty fines, penalties, and jail time, along with a criminal conviction. It is essential to employ the legal assistance of a Domestic Violence Attorney in Orange, CA who is experienced with domestic violence law in California to guide you throughout your entire case.
Criminal law attorney Ed Flores has handled hundreds of domestic violence cases over the course of his career, securing not guilty verdicts and positive resolutions, including dismissal of charges. Call or contact our Orange County office today.
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