What Are The Penalties For Domestic Violence Convictions?
The penalties for domestic violence convictions vary greatly depending on whether or not you have previous convictions, whether or not you have previous felony convictions and the level of felonies that you have been convicted thereof, whether or not you are pleading guilty, and whether you are being convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony offense in this matter. On the misdemeanor side, I routinely see penalties of anger management and the issuance of orders of protection. Orders of protection are probably the single most important component to domestic violence prosecution from the prosecution’s perspective, and from the state’s perspective. The state really emphasizes removing the two parties from each other in domestic violence cases.
They view it as a necessary cooling off period, and they don’t want any kind of contact between the alleged victim and the alleged offender for a period of time. That includes the entire length of the case and can include a period of anywhere from 6 months up to 5 years after the conclusion of the case, depending upon the outcome. That is one of the most important components of a penalty in a domestic violence misdemeanor case. On the felony side, you will typically see penalties of probation, but you can also see jail sentences. If that particular prosecutor’s office favors treatment programs for these types of cases, they are typically handled along with some sort of incarceration or monetary penalty.
Do You Recommend Pre-Trial Counseling Or Treatment For Domestic Violence Clients?
It can be very helpful, in certain circumstances, to voluntarily engage in some form of treatment, whether it’s anger management or individual counseling with a therapist when a domestic violence case is pending. I recently had a client in White Plains who voluntarily engaged in counseling and as a result of that, I was able to negotiate an adjournment in compensation of dismissal, commonly known as an ECB. As a result of that, if you successfully complete the program that you are engaged in, and don’t violate the terms of the order of protection for a period of a year, the case will be dismissed. There will be no record of it, and there will be no criminal conviction on your record.
I think it can be a very helpful and useful tool for individuals who are interested in taking a proactive approach. It is worth it to discuss this with your attorney so that they can negotiate the terms with the prosecution prior to that person enrolling in the treatment program. You want to make sure that it is the type of program that the District Attorney’s office will find acceptable, and that the judge and the court will find acceptable.
What Are Some Of The Defense Strategies Used in Domestic Violence Cases?
Our Westchester criminal defense lawyers have extensive experience in assault cases where self defense is a justification. Self-defense is a frequently utilized defense in any type of assault case, and it definitely comes up in domestic violence scenarios. With a male or a female defendant, or male and female offenders, there are usually significant histories and backstories that need to be outlined and explained by your defense attorney, to both the prosecution either the judge or the jury, in order to put the incident in the appropriate context. A typical strategy that our Westchester criminal defense attorneys have employed is to demonstrate that there is a lack of evidence or lack of corroboration. A lot of times these alleged incidents happen without any other witnesses. One person’s testimony can be all that is offered in order to try and garner a conviction in these cases.
When that happens, our White Plains domestic violence lawyers can then demonstrate that there is a lack of evidence to substantiate the charges. You can also attack the credibility of witnesses, and show that there was some ulterior motive or some reason, they are claiming that domestic violence situation occurred. Those are some of the typical defense strategies utilized by a defense attorney.
In some cases, where an incident occurs in public, and the complaining witness is lying, our White Plains criminal defense attorneys have been aggressive and obtained Court orders to get video surveillance, which tends to undermine the story of the complaining witness.
Read on to find out about Penalties For A Domestic Violence Conviction. Call the law offices of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC for a FREE Initial Consultation at (914) 574-8330 and get the information and legal answers you are seeking.