domestic-violence-attorneyIf you or someone you care about is facing a domestic violence charge, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney. A domestic violence attorney at Casey and Torres, Attorneys at Law, can help explain the charges and properly defend against them. We can be reached twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week at (850) 222-1742.

Many of these cases fall in the category often referred to as “he said, she said” cases.  They are extremely difficult for the State to prove; however, the State tends to aggressively prosecute these cases due to the violent nature of the charges.  A conviction, even if adjudication is withheld, can have serious consequences, including your right to own or possess a firearm.   It may be very helpful to have an experienced domestic violence attorney on your side.  These cases can have wide-ranging effects on child custody and support issues as well as incredible impact on your ability to get or keep employment.

What Is “Domestic Violence”?

Under Florida law, the phrase “Domestic violence” means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.

“Family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.

“Simple” Domestic Battery (Section 784.03 and 741.28 Florida Statutes):

The offense of battery occurs when a person:

1. Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; or
2. Intentionally causes bodily harm to another person.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who commits battery commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.
(2) A person who has one prior conviction for battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery and who commits any second or subsequent battery commits a felony of the third degree. For purposes of this subsection, “conviction” means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or a trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or a plea of nolo contendere is entered.

Simple Domestic Battery may be charged where there was physical contact, but no physical evidence of injury to the victim.

Aggravated Battery (Section 784.045, Florida Statutes):

1)(a) A person commits aggravated battery who, in committing battery:

1. Intentionally or knowingly causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement; or
2. Uses a deadly weapon.
(b) A person commits aggravated battery if the person who was the victim of the battery was pregnant at the time of the offense and the offender knew or should have known that the victim was pregnant.
(2) Whoever commits aggravated battery shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree.

Aggravated Battery is a very serious felony charge that typically requires prison time regardless of your lack of prior criminal record or not.  Generally, these charges are so serious that the Court will appoint you an attorney if you do not hire one.  In many of these cases, self-defense and the Stand Your Ground law are integral to a successful defense.  Both partners at our firm are very familiar with these laws and issues with experience prosecuting and defending these types of charges.

Punishment For Domestic Violence

As with any crime, the potential punishment for domestic violence will vary based on the facts of the case, and can include:

Pursuant to Section 741.281, Florida Statutes, if a person is found guilty of, has adjudication withheld on, or pleads nolo contendere to a crime of domestic violence, that person shall be ordered by the court to a minimum term of 1 year’s probation and the court shall order that the defendant attend a batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation. The court must impose the condition of the batterers’ intervention program for a defendant under this section, but the court, in its discretion, may determine not to impose the condition if it states on the record why a batterers’ intervention program might be inappropriate. The court must impose the condition of the batterers’ intervention program for a defendant placed on probation unless the court determines that the person does not qualify for the batterers’ intervention program pursuant to s. 741.325.

Pursuant to Section 741.283, Florida Statutes, If a person is adjudicated guilty of a crime of domestic violence, and the person has intentionally caused bodily harm to another person, the court shall order the person to serve a minimum of 5 days in the county jail as part of the sentence imposed, unless the court sentences the person to a nonsuspended period of incarceration in a state correctional facility. This section does not preclude the court from sentencing the person to probation, community control, or an additional period of incarceration.

Defenses To Domestic Abuse Charges

Depending on the particular facts of a case, defenses to a Domestic Violence charge may include the following:

  • False Accusations – Arguments between spouses and domestic partners can often result in false accusations of domestic abuse
  • Self Defense – Defendant used reasonable self defense to protect himself or herself from an attack from their spouse or domestic partner
  • Accident — Defendant did not deliberately do an act to cause injury

It is highly recommended that you discuss your case with a domestic violence attorney to ensure that any available defense has been examined.

Domestic Violence Attorney

Call us today to discuss your situation with an experienced domestic violence attorney and put us to work for you!