When most people think of domestic violence, they are thinking of a physical altercation between a husband and wife. However, domestic violence actually covers a wide variety of possible scenarios. Generally speaking, it is considered domestic violence anytime one family member commits a violent criminal act against another family member. If two or more family members are involved, assault or battery as well as sexual battery can all be considered domestic violence.
Domestic violence penalties can include the following:
In addition, if you are a non-citizen then you may be deported. And because domestic violence convictions are ineligible for sealing or expungement, you are facing having a permanent criminal record.
Domestic violence charges rarely occur in a vacuum. Most of the time, there is a larger context that is at work in the background. Examples include a pending divorce, especially if there are child custody disputes involved. Other times, substance abuse, mental health issues, or family feuds may be factors in the case.
In fact, it is all too possible that a well-meaning bystander may misinterpret something that they witness and call the police. This may be the case even if neither party involved considered the event serious enough to involve law enforcement. However, once they have been called to the scene then the legal process must generally be seen through to its conclusion.
This is because according to Florida law, the alleged victim cannot simply drop the charges. Only the State Attorney can drop the charges, and there is a specific process in place for that. An experienced domestic violence defense attorney can assist with this process.
If your charges are not dismissed, then your bond will be set by a judge at your first appearance, sometimes called the advisory hearing. This is one of the many reasons it is important to retain an experienced attorney as soon as possible. We have assisted clients in obtaining bonds and even having them released on their own recognizance rather than going to jail. Regardless of the terms of a release, most individuals who have been charged with domestic violence are given a “no contact” order with the alleged victim. Even if the other individual involved agree that the charges should not have been made, it is vital that you do not violate the no contact order.
We understand that domestic violence charges generally have a lot of history behind them and are highly individual and complex as a result. We commit ourselves to understanding the entire context of the situation and developing a personalized defense strategy. If you have been charged with domestic violence in the Orlando metro area, please contact us today for your free consultation.