Legal Guidance Through Difficult Domestic Violence Matters
Domestic violence is a growing problem. According to the Texas Council on Family Violence, one in three Texans will suffer domestic violence.
Laws are being passed to protect people suffering from domestic violence. Unfortunately, that means there are also more false accusations too. Call the domestic violence attorneys at Gibbs Nolte Robison Rose, PLLC if you are either the victim of or being accused of domestic violence.
What is Domestic Violence?
It is classified as an assault that causes bodily harm to a family member, someone living in the same house, or in a dating relationship.
It can include:
- Intentional/reckless bodily harm
- Threatening bodily harm
- Physical contact that the offender knows (or should know) someone will find offensive or provocative
There are factors that will be considered when a penalty is determined, including:
- Victim/offender relationship
- Defendant’s past domestic violence convictions
Depending on the details, the penalty could be:
- Class C misdemeanor. Up to a year in jail; a fine.
- First degree felony. Five-99 years; up to $10,000.
- Second degree felony. Two-20 years; up to $10,000.
- Third degree felony. Two-10 years; up to $10,000.
If the defendant intentionally, knowingly or recklessly caused bodily harm, this offense can become a Class A misdemeanor (one year in jail; up to $10,000; or both). Exceptions could increase or decrease the penalty.
Aggravated Domestic Assault
Someone intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causes serious bodily harm to a spouse, family member or romantic partner. It could also reach this level is someone uses a deadly weapon; or engage in an act that they know the family member will find offensive.
Continuous Violence Against The Family
Can happen if someone commits two domestic assaults in 12 months. A conviction can come even if the previous charges did not result in arrest/conviction. The previous assaults also do not have to involve the same victim.
Protections Against False Accusations
Domestic violence carries a stigma that can create a problem. Because allegations of domestic violence carry a negative implication, people make false allegations to get revenge.
- The action was unintentional/a mistake
- A reasonable fear of harm to themselves
- Self defense
- No provocation
- Nothing happened