With so much emphasis placed on domestic violence crimes, Ventura law enforcement – and law enforcement nationwide – oftentimes charge numerous men and women wrongfully, accusing them of a variety of crimes such as violation of protection from abuse orders, child abuse or spousal abuse, and frivolous crimes they did not commit.
What is Domestic Violence?
California law defines Domestic Violence as any abusive action taken to intimidate someone or assert power or domination over someone within a relationship, whether that relationship is spousal, child parent, or otherwise. Abuse can take many forms, and can include emotional or psychological abuse, physical abuse, and sexual abuse, all of which can take many forms themselves.
According to the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence, more women than men have reported experiencing some type of domestic violence. Specifically:
- 1 in 4 women versus 1 in 7 men have experienced “severe” violence at the hands of a partner
- 1 in four women are affected by sexual abuse violence and stalking versus 1 in 7 men
- Women are beaten four times more than men are
- Women are six times more likely to be slammed against something than men are
- Women are nine times more likely to be choked or strangled than men are
- 81 percent of women who reported domestic violence reported PTSD
- 35 percent of men who reported domestic violence reported PTSD
- Between 12-35% of teenagers aged 9 to 14 experienced violence in a dating relationship
These statistics are from California alone.
Domestic Violence Sentencing Penalties
If arrested for domestic violence, the charges against you will depend on your criminal record and the situation surrounding the charge and arrest, and could result in either a felony or misdemeanor charge.
A misdemeanor domestic violence conviction typically results in a sentence of:
- Community service, 40 hours
- Domestic violence counseling, 1 year
- Jail time, up to one year
- No contact order, up to six months
- Fines and restitution
A felony domestic violence conviction can result in a sentence of the same penalties as a misdemeanor conviction, but with a three-year prison sentence instead of one.
Fighting the Charges with an Experienced Ventura Domestic Violence Lawyer
“Robert Helfend is one of the best criminal defense attorneys I’ve ever worked with. He was so knowledgeable, and always made sure I understood everything every step of the way. I would definitely recommend him to anyone who wants an understanding, caring, and truly helpful lawyer.”
Oftentimes, domestic abuse charges result from a victim statement against the accused, and no physical evidence to back up the statement. This can result in a “he said she said” case that is difficult to prove and just as difficult to fight. However, because the domestic violence statistics are so disproportionately high, the courts and prosecution tend to take the side of the victim without fully investigating the alleged crimes against the accused.
Additionally, when domestic violence is involved, physical injury need not be present as it would in the case of a simple assault, for example, which is a crime where an injury must be present to make an arrest. Unfortunately, this means that a disproportionate number of alleged abusers are in fact innocent.
This is why it is so extremely important that the accused hire an attorney immediately after being arrested, and hire one who understands the statistics and the facts surrounding domestic violence arrests – someone who will not stop fighting until the truth is heard, no matter what it is.
Another reason to hire an attorney to fight your case is that even though the victim might not want to press charges, the prosecuting attorney can file charges against you anyway – and this happens often, especially after the alleged victim has realized after a cooling off period they overreacted.
You need to hire an attorney who knows how to navigate the path to a recanted statement so that the prosecutor doesn’t press charges after the fact – without the alleged victim.
My 20 years of experience fighting domestic abuse and domestic violence charges gives me the knowledge I need to do just that. Let me help you fight the charges against you by allowing me to review your case in confidence so we can figure out the circumstances and prepare the best defense possible.