Avondale Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer

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AVONDALE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LAWYER

If you are charged with any crime, it is vital to know your rights and the value of having experienced defense representation on your side. Domestic violence is a broad legal term that can apply to any act of violence within a family and/or household, and the penalties for domestic violence convictions in Arizona are generally severe. An experienced Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer can be an invaluable asset if you have been charged with this offense.

Domestic violence charges can stack on top of common offenses, such as assault, based on the relationship between a perpetrator and an alleged victim. These charges can carry serious criminal penalties and can be charged as misdemeanors or felonies, based on the underlying offense. You need to contact an Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer as quickly as you can if you are arrested and charged with domestic violence.

An Avondale domestic violence lawyer can help you understand how domestic charges interact with another offense and what the possible penalties are. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys can also help you understand more serious domestic violence charges that can qualify as aggravated offenses.

The Grand Canyon Law Group has years of professional experience in criminal defense. We know the emotional weight that domestic violence cases often carry and the many questions you are likely to have about what you could face in your impending trial. Our goal is to help you build a solid defense and approach your proceedings with confidence and peace of mind. You should reach out to a defense attorney as quickly as possible after your arrest in Avondale.

UNDERSTAND YOUR RIGHTS WHEN ARRESTED

Every American citizen is protected by the Constitution, and two amendments in particular come into play whenever an individual is arrested for a crime. First, the Fifth Amendment protects against self-incrimination, preserving the defendant’s right to remain silent once they are placed under arrest. No matter what arresting officers tell you to the contrary, you have no obligation to answer any questions or make any statements while in police custody.

The Sixth Amendment preserves your right to legal counsel when you have been charged with a crime. Once you are placed under arrest and the arresting officer has read you your Miranda rights, do not try to explain your way out of the situation and do not resist arrest. These actions will work against you severely. Remain silent until you can make your phone calls and reach out to an experienced Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer.

One of the most difficult aspects of many domestic violence cases is the fact that many of these cases come down to one party’s word against the other’s. Witnesses may or may not be available to give statements and report what they saw and heard, and the law is designed to prevent victims from facing further abuse. This means if you are wrongfully accused of domestic violence, it can easily feel as though the entire system is working against you.

Remain silent once you are placed under arrest, and once you have an experienced Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer on your side, they can review the details of your arrest and listen to your side of the story. They will help you determine the most viable defenses you could employ in your case and will do everything they can to help you avoid conviction if at all possible.

GENERAL PENALTIES FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN ARIZONA

Arizona Code § 13-3601 defines domestic violence as any one of several violent crimes where a specific relationship exists between the alleged violator and the victim. If the relationship falls into one of these categories, then a perpetrator could face additional domestic violence charges:

  • They were married, or lived together
  • They have a child together, or one is pregnant by the other
  • They are related by blood or by law (parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, in-laws, or step-relationship)
  • The victim is a child who a) is related to the perpetrator’s former spouse or another resident of the household and b) lives or has lived in the perpetrator’s household
  • They are, or were, in a romantic or sexual relationship

The classification of a domestic violence charge depends on the crime on which it stacks. A domestic violence misdemeanor comes from an underlying misdemeanor and a domestic violence felony comes from an underlying felony. The penalties for a domestic violence offense will therefore depend on the sentencing guidelines for the underlying crime, as laid out by the Arizona Criminal Code Sentencing Provisions.

This classification also matters because the state creates specific penalties for misdemeanor domestic violence as opposed to felonies. Under Arizona Code Section 13-3601.01, a judge must place a person convicted of a misdemeanor domestic violence offense in an offender treatment program, and the convicted person must cover the program’s costs. Also, if a person is convicted of more than one misdemeanor domestic violence offense in a 60-month period, a judge can order supervised probation and incarceration as part of that probation.

Understanding the classification of a domestic violence offense is where a domestic violence lawyer in Avondale can provide valuable insight. An attorney can help an alleged perpetrator sort through prior offenses and see how a charge will be classified.

It is vital for a defendant charged with domestic violence in Avondale to remember that their penalties may far exceed what the criminal court assigns in sentencing. They could also face repercussions in family court, such as a restraining order that forces them to move out of their home and/or a loss of their child custody or visitation rights. They could also face a civil suit from the victim, who may seek compensation for their damages.

AGGRAVATED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND ADDITIONAL PENALTIES

State law pays special attention to repeat domestic violence offenses, elevating a third or subsequent offense to one of aggravated domestic violence. These repeat offenses must have occurred within an 84-month period for the latest offense to become aggravated under § 13-3601.02.

An aggravated domestic violence offense becomes a Class 5 felony, no matter the underlying crime. A Class 5 felony carries a minimum sentence of 5 years in jail and a maximum of 7.5 years, and the 2-year sentence enhancement mentioned above for domestic violence against a pregnant victim could apply as well.

Aggravated domestic violence offenses also affect probation and other methods of limiting a jail sentence. For example, an aggravated offense coming after two prior offenses in the 84-month period prevents any probation, pardon, sentence commutation, suspension of sentence, or other release for the first four months of the sentence. Similarly, a fourth or subsequent offense in the 84-month period prevents sentence reductions for the first eight months of the sentence.

Whether prior offenses count for the 84-month period depends on the date of the offense instead of the date of conviction. A domestic violence lawyer can help a defendant in Avondale understand if a charge qualifies as aggravated and what penalties could result.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TO PREGNANT WOMEN

If the domestic violence charge is for a felony committed against a pregnant victim who the perpetrator knew was pregnant—or if the charge is for a felony that causes physical injury to a pregnant victim known to be pregnant—then the maximum sentence increases by up to 2 years.

Ultimately, the age and condition of the victim in a domestic violence case could be significant aggravating factors if the defendant is convicted. Harm to a pregnant woman, a child, an elder, or an individual with disabilities can lead to severe penalties beyond the standard penalties typically assigned for the offense. Every domestic violence case is unique, so every defendant needs a legal advocate they can trust to help them develop the strongest possible defense.

HOW YOUR AVONDALE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE DEFENSE LAWYER CAN HELP

The right attorney can be an invaluable asset no matter what type of domestic violence charges have been filed against you. Your defense team can review the details of your arrest, examine the arrest report, and make sure that due process has been followed at all stages of your case. Your Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer can be your most effective asset when it comes to highlighting all the possible defenses you might employ in your upcoming proceedings.

Successfully defending yourself in a domestic violence case may require asserting an affirmative defense, disproving a false allegation of domestic violence, proving a mistake of fact, or proving a mistake of law. An affirmative defense a defendant might employ in this type of case is proving that they only acted in self-defense or in defense of another person. It is also possible that they may need to prove their accuser was actually the aggressor in the situation.

Unfortunately, domestic violence is one of the most common falsely alleged crimes in the United States. Some people will falsely accuse their partners, co-parents, or spouses of domestic violence in their efforts to gain legal advantages in divorce proceedings and/or child custody disputes. If you have been falsely accused of a crime you did not commit, you need to work with a seasoned Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer you trust to help you prove the truth.

Proving a mistake of fact typically means proving problems with the prosecution’s evidence. Remember that to secure a conviction in any criminal case, the burden of proving the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt rests with the prosecution. It is up to them to leverage evidence and witness testimony against the defendant, proving that there can be no doubt as to whether they committed the offense.

It is also possible to defend yourself against a domestic violence charge by proving a mistake of law, such as a due process violation, a violation of your constitutional rights, or an unacceptable means of securing evidence on the part of the prosecution. Ultimately, every case is unique, and every defendant in this situation needs a defense team capable of helping them build the strongest possible defense against these serious charges.

SPEAK WITH AN AVONDALE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ATTORNEY TO LEARN MORE

Domestic violence charges can result in serious jail sentences and repeat offenses can increase possible penalties. Even though domestic violence offenses link to an underlying charge and get classified in line with that charge, they add additional penalties and can complicate sentencing. An experienced Avondale domestic violence defense lawyer can help their client understand the legal mechanisms in play in their case and make more informed decisions about their defense.

Discussing your charges with an Avondale domestic violence lawyer can only help you in defending yourself from prosecution. Grand Canyon Law Group can support you and provide a realistic picture of what penalties you might face. Our team has successfully defended many clients in a wide range of domestic violence cases, and we are ready to put this experience to work for you. Call us now for a free consultation.

Schedule A Consultation With The Grand Canyon Attorney Who Can Help