The justice system takes all cases involving domestic violence in Downey seriously. If you have been charged with domestic violence, you should call an experienced attorney to help argue your case.
A domestic violence lawyer in Downey can guide you through this process and gather evidence to help your case. Our lawyers from Simmrin Law Group are knowledgeable and experienced in dealing with even the toughest cases. We understand the seriousness of the charges, which is why we will try to do everything possible to help you.
What Is Considered as Domestic Violence in Downey?
The Domestic Violence Prevention Act under California’s Family Code §6200 defines domestic violence as any type of abuse directed at a person with a clearly defined relationship with the offender. The abuse can be either physical/sexual/ psychological, and it occurs between people who are in a close personal relationship, including:
- Current spouse or ex-spouses
- Man and woman who live together or have lived together
- Parents and children
- Grandparents and grandchildren
- A guardian to a minor child
- Two people who have a child in common
- People who live together or used to live together or former household members
- People who are/were dating or engaged
For a free legal consultation with a domestic violence lawyer serving Downey, call (310) 896-2723
Domestic Violence Charges in Downey, California
Common domestic violence charges in Downey include:
- Domestic battery according to Penal Code §243(e)(1)
- Inflicting corporal injury on a person who is an intimate partner under Penal Code §273.5
Domestic violence can also involve actions such as:
- Domestic battery
- Criminal threats
- Violating a protective order
- Child abuse
- Child endangerment
- Elder abuse
- Online bullying
Downey Domestic Violence Lawyer Near Me (310) 896-2723
Police Involvement in a Domestic Violence Scene
When the police are called to a domestic violence scene, they will either arrest or file charges against the alleged abuser if they have probable cause to do so. To determine that there is probable cause, the police will look for evidence such as bruises and torn clothing. They will also likely take witness statements at the scene to determine what they saw or heard.
The police will inform the victim of their rights to press charges and file a family offense petition in family court.
The police can also issue an emergency protection order (EPO) to protect the abused. An EPO is a short-term protective order issued by either the police or magistrate to protect a victim of domestic violence and give them more time to request a permanent restraining order.
What to Do If You Have Been Served with a Protective Order
A protective order could be in the form of:
- An emergency protective order (EPO)
- A temporary restraining order (TRO)
- A permanent restraining order (PRO)
If you have been served with a protective order, you need to follow it precisely. Call your Downey domestic violence lawyer immediately if you don’t understand any aspect of the content of the order. Your attorney can guide you on what to do and what not to do.
Failure to abide by the protective order will make it difficult for you to convince the judge that the protective order is unnecessary. You may also face serious charges for violating a protective order.
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What to Do If Accused of Domestic Violence in Downey
A domestic violence charge or accusation can have serious impacts on your reputation and your life at large, even if you’re later proved to be innocent. Here’s what to do if accused or charged with domestic violence:
- Cut off communication with your accuser – While talking to your accuser in an attempt to resolve your issues may seem like the right course of action, it may be misconstrued as harassment and hurt your case even more.
- Start collecting evidence of your innocence – This evidence can include witness testimonies, camera footage, electronic records, etc.
- Hire a domestic violence attorney – An experienced attorney can evaluate your case, conduct an investigation of the facts and help gather more evidence to defend you in court. After you’re acquitted, your lawyer can also file a countersuit for damages caused by the false domestic violence accusation to get you compensation.
Possible Defenses in Domestic Violence Cases
Your attorney can evaluate the police report when domestic violence charges have been brought against you to come up with a proper defense. These defenses can include:
You Are Wrongfully Accused
Your domestic violence attorney in Downey can find evidence supporting your claim that you did not do it. Some of the evidence can include:
- An alibi to confirm that you weren’t with the victim or near the location of the victim at the time the alleged abuse happened
- Incriminating evidence
The “Victim” Lied
People can lie about being victims of domestic violence. The alleged “victim” may have fabricated the whole thing, so your attorney may need to find evidence supporting that the victim lied. The evidence can include:
- Whether your story is consistent with the victim’s injury
- Whether your claims are inconsistent with the police crime report, for instance, if you say the victim fell, yet the crime report shows no injuries consistent with a fall.
The Injuries Occurred as a Result of an Accident
If you accidentally injured the victim, your attorney can try to come up with evidence supporting your claim. This evidence can include a:
- Crime report
- Medical report
Penalties for Domestic Violence in Downey
Most cases of domestic violence are considered wobbler offenses in the state of California. Wobbler offenses are crimes that can be charged as either misdemeanor or felony. Examples of domestic violence crimes that can be charged as a felony include:
- Sexual or physical abuse of a minor
- The abuse involved sexual violence
- Serious bodily injury
- A previous conviction for other crimes
- A previous conviction for domestic violence
Courts will impose either a 30/60/90-day minimum jail term, irrespective of whether the crime was charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Persons charged with felony domestic violence may face:
- Up to four years or more in a state prison
- A conviction on your permanent criminal record
- A loss of custody rights
- A loss of the right to own a gun
If charged with a misdemeanor, you can face:
- Up to one year in prison
- A $1000 fine
Let a Downey Domestic Violence Attorney Help You
When you have been charged with domestic violence, your freedom is at risk. Prosecutors often charge domestic violence matters to the fullest extent of the law. A skilled domestic violence lawyer can intervene on your behalf to get you a favorable outcome or possibly help bring down the charges.
At Simmrin Law Group, our lawyers have experience in dealing with domestic violence cases and can do everything possible to help you avoid serious penalties. Contact us today for a case evaluation.