What is Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence is a crime that is committed against someone with whom you have a relationship with, such as a spouse, a roommate, mother, father, or girlfriend.
There are other relationships that qualify (see below). Domestic violence is a strictly regulated by law and a violation of domestic violence requires that the sentence include at the very least, 52 week anger management course, formal probation, and other conditions of probation set forth in Penal Code section 1203.097.
Depending on the circumstances of your arrest, the following are some of the crimes you may be charged with:
- Penal Code section 243(e)(1) – Charged as a misdemeanor only. A violation of this section is showing by proving you committed a battery against “a spouse, a person with whom the defendant is cohabiting, a person who is the parent of the defendant’s child, former spouse, fiancé, or fiancée, or a person with whom the defendant currently has, or has previously had, a dating or engagement relationship.”
- Penal Code section 273.5 – Charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. To prove a violation of this domestic violence law, the prosecutor will have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you inflicted corporal injury that results in a traumatic condition. To be guilty of this domestic violence crime, the person injured must be a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant or former cohabitant, a fiancé or former fiancée, someone you previously dated, your mother or father, or your child.
- Penal Code section 13700 – This code section defines “Domestic Violence” as abuse perpetrated against someone you have or had a relationship with. Abuse is defined to include any crime committed against a person with whom you have or have had a relationship with and is very broad.
- And there are even more statutes we could list, but that would take a whole blog. Please trust that we know what we are doing in these cases and will take care of you and help you through charges of domestic violence.
How Can Fiumara & Milligan Help?
We will appear with you in court. We will appear with you, prepare you, and help you get through the court proceedings. We will give you advice about how to act, how to respond to the judge, where to park, what you can and cannot bring to court, and more! Going to court is stressful for our clients so we want to make sure we can help you reduce that stress by giving you information to help.
We will review your police report. Once we represent you we can review the police report and any other evidence available to ensure your rights are protected. We will give you a copy of that report so that you can review it and then we will discuss the report and all other relevant materials with you.
The Protective Order – we will help you to know exactly what you can and cannot do. In almost all domestic violence cases there is an Emergency Protective Order that has been served on our client prohibiting from contacting the injured party and can sometimes even include the children who were present. We will give you the information you need to know to avoid violating that order. NOTE: Your attorney of record can contact the injured party on your behalf to discuss things like retrieving property, child visitation, and more.
We will negotiate your case with the prosecutor. WeWe know the prosecutors in all the counties we practice in and know how to negotiate your case for the best possible outcome. This is based on years of experience and showing the prosecutors that we don’t shy away from a trial if necessary. We always try to resolve your case short of trial because trials are risky, but the prosecutors all know that when we go to trial they better be ready for a fight!
We will help you make the decision about whether to go to trial or not. Whether you go to trial or not depends on many factors, such as whether there are witnesses and whether there is evidence to support the crime. There are many more factors and each case is unique. We are always trying to resolve a case for you by a dismissal, but that is not always an option so sometimes our clients want to go to trial. We have a great record at trial because we work hard for our clients. We will keep you informed at all times so you have the right amount of time and knowledge necessary to make and informed decision.
What are Potential Defenses?
There are so many types of crimes that qualify as domestic violence and so many different defense to each of them that it is impossible to list them all here. But the following are a few defenses:
The crime did not arise to domestic violence because there was no “abuse.”Abuse is defined per Penal Code section 13700 to mean “intentionally or recklessly causing or attempting to cause bodily injury, or placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent serious bodily injury to himself or herself, or another.” For instance, holding a person by the shoulders with some emotion without causing any injury is not domestic violence. That is a couple working things out and there is no abuse.
The “victim” doesn’t want to press charges.In many cases of domestic violence there are no witnesses to the alleged crime other than the injured party. And in just as many cases the couple want to work things out amongst themselves without court intervention, but the injured party called the cops at the time thinking it would help. Often what happens is that the situation is taken out of the injured party’s hands and that’s not what they wanted. We can help in this situation. It is very delicate and needs to be done just right. We always suggest counseling and additional resources to help a couple work through their issues in a healthy and productive way.
What is the Fee?
In most cases we charge a flat fee for our criminal defense cases. We will have to meet with you either in person or by telephone for a ½ hour free consultation, to discuss your case and assess the potential defenses in your case in light of the facts. Our flat fee covers all appearances, motion work and more. There are no hidden fees and we will communicate with you at times.
Call Us Today for IMMEDIATE HELP at 707-571-8600!