Articles Posted in Domestic Violence

COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) AND MY CASE (TRIAL OR APPEAL)

The rapidly expanding pandemic crisis of COVID-19 has had sweeping effects on everyday life. Due to Center For Disease Control (CDC) recommendations California has taken immediate measures to protect the public by enforcing social distancing and restrictions of gatherings of more than ten (10) people. This has meant immediate actions by the California Supreme Court and the California Superior Courts. Trial and Appeal Courts have moved to cease operations by closing doors and postponing pending matters. In the Los Angeles Superior Court, only critical in-custody matters with substantive pending hearings are being dispositioned. All other matters – trial or otherwise – are being continued by the Court for 30-45 days. 

With the CDC recommending drastic changes in American lifestyle to limit the spread of the Coronavirus, it is uncertain if the Courts will resume normal operations in the next 60-90 days. 

Domestic violence

Domestic violence can destroy families and rip apart the very social fabric of society. The law has been designed from the ground up to prevent and stop domestic violence, and suitably rehabilitate perpetrators. Domestic violence in California is defined as any criminal offense that involves committing a battery on one’s spouse, parent, cohabitant, or partner. It is charged under the California Penal Code 243(e)(1).

The most common charges for domestic violence in California include:

  • Child Endangerment (PC 273a)
  • Corporal Injury to a Spouse or Cohabitant (PC 273.5)
  • Child Abuse (PC 273d)
  • Criminal Threats (PC 422)

Victims of domestic violence carry feelings of self-doubt and even helplessness, which makes it important to seek help. Below are 4 types of domestic violence in California.

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Domestic violence, also referred to as domestic abuse, comes in many forms and may leave those accused facing criminal charges. Depending on how serious the incident was and other factors, you may be charged with a misdemeanor or felony offense. Misdemeanor charges are generally less serious than felony charges and result in penalties/punishment that is less harsh than with a felony conviction.

It is a crime under California’s domestic violence laws to harm, or threaten to harm a spouse, fellow parent, cohabitant, intimate partner, or even someone you are dating/have dated. Unfortunately, many people who are completely innocent are accused of domestic abuse every day. Even worse, if you are found guilty or “convicted” of domestic violence it can impact your reputation, family relationships, even your freedom. A criminal record is something you don’t want hanging over your head.

If you are convicted on domestic violence charges, other consequences may include payment of restitution to the victim, fines, loss of child custody rights, mandatory participation in domestic violence classes, jail time, and immigration consequences if you are not a citizen of the U.S.

In 2014, Los Angeles saw a significant jump in violent crime; in fact, it was up 14.3%, according to LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and Mayor Eric Garcetti in a January 12 news report at NBC4.

According to Beck and Garcetti, the biggest factor in the increase in violent crime was the rise in domestic violence cases. The mayor claims Los Angeles is safer than it has ever been, and that part of the reason for the unflattering statistics and increase in certain violent crimes is the fact that LA is growing. Property crime was down nearly 5% in 2014, and is the most common offense in the Los Angeles area.

The primary drivers for increases in violent crime include not only an increase in situations involving domestic violence, but the switch of some misdemeanor assaults to aggravated.

As highly regarded Los Angeles domestic violence defense attorneys, we know how stressful it is for clients charged with this offense.  Will you be arrested if your partner/spouse asked police not to?  Can the alleged victim drop the charge against you if he/she changes his or her mind?  Those in a relationship often have arguments and disagreements – it’s just our nature as humans.  However, sometimes things escalate, particularly if alcohol or drugs are involved.  Regardless of whether it was an altercation involving alcohol or not, no doubt you have questions.

Here are a few of the most commonly asked questions by both the accused and the alleged victim in a domestic violence case:

Can an alleged victim decide to drop the charge?  No.  Frequently, those who call the police and allege domestic violence see things in a different light the next day and regret their actions.  You may decide you want to drop the charge or take back your accusations.  The thing is, now it’s in the hands of police and prosecutors – and if the prosecutor believes he/she has a solid case, charges will be filed.

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