Men and women alike may be wrongfully accused of domestic violence, spousal abuse, child abuse, neglect and restraining order violations. These are all particularly sensitive issues that should be addressed immediately by a Los Angeles domestic violence lawyer who can assert your Constitutional rights to help avoid frivolous charges and an unjust conviction. As a criminal defense attorney who has been representing clients in the face of criminal charges for more than 30 years, I understand the ins and outs of the criminal process related to domestic violence charges and can put this knowledge to work as I build a comprehensive defense strategy on your behalf.
What is domestic violence? It may be defined as any form of violence or abuse between family members, people who live together, people in a romantic relationship, spouses or ex-spouses. Domestic violence could be against a spouse, former spouse, roommate or former roommate, and a boyfriend/girlfriend or former boyfriend / girlfriend, the parent of your child or any parent, sibling, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew or cousin.
“Robert Helfend is one of the best criminal defense attorneys I’ve ever worked with. He was so knowledgeable, and always made sure I understood everything every step of the way. I would definitely recommend him to anyone who wants an understanding, caring, and truly helpful lawyer.”Pat, CA
When it comes to domestic violence, women tend to be more often victimized than men. According to statistics:
- Approximately 1.5 million women are raped or physically assaulted by a partner each year
- Violence by an intimate partner accounts for 22% of reported violent crime against women
- One out of four American women becomes a victim of domestic violence during her lifetime
- Women aged 16-24 experience the highest per capita rates of intimate violence
- Domestic violence is the cause of more visits to the emergency room by women than any other injury
- Between 12-35% of teenagers have experienced some form of violence in a dating relationship
In 2014 alone, the Los Angeles Police Department reported more than 39,000 calls for domestic violence assistance. Because statistics are so high- courts will frequently take the side of the alleged victim. In some cases, actual physical injury need not have resulted for a defendant to face domestic violence charges. Because legislation and case law concerning domestic violence charges can be a complex topic, it is important to involve a lawyer with experience in handling these particular cases.
Penalties for Domestic Violence
Domestic Violence Defense Attorney in Southern California
Depending on your criminal record and the circumstances surrounding your case, you could either be charged with a misdemeanor or felony. A misdemeanor domestic violence conviction results in: 40 hours of community service, 52 weeks of domestic violence counseling, fines, a no contact order with the victim and up to 6 months in jail. A felony conviction on the other hand can result in all of the same penalties, but instead of a short jail sentence, a prison sentence of up to three years. Because domestic violence can involve a lot of "he said, she said" it is imperative that you get an experienced, credible criminal defense attorney on your side immediately.
Contact a Los Angeles domestic violence lawyer today!
One of the most serious aspects of domestic violence charges in Los Angeles is the fact that the prosecuting attorney may still press charges even if the victim does not want to. A frequent scenario that I have run into in my years as a criminal defense attorney is that the person who initially called the police or claimed that domestic violence occurred does not want to press charges. They have had time to cool off and realize that they overreacted, but their attempt to withdraw allegations has come too late. This is one of many reasons that it is so important to involve a lawyer to handle your charges as early in the process as possible. You may actually have options to recant a claim of domestic violence, and I understand how to go about this. Contact my law office for a confidential review of the specific circumstances of your case!