Family violence and domestic violence charges involve harmful actions or behavior to family members, relationship partners, and other individuals related to the alleged abuser in some way (e.g., roommate or co-parent). These charges are divided into two categories depending on which individuals are involved in the incident. If an individual is convicted of assault or violence, they may face harsh penalties.
If you are facing related charges in Addison, Texas, you can hire an Addison family and domestic violence lawyer from Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg to defend your case. Our legal team can investigate if your charges or arrest were unlawful and create a defense argument using the evidence we find to advocate for your rights.
Family Violence and Domestic Violence Are Defined Differently in Texas
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) notes that the Texas Penal Code defines family violence as “an act by a member of a family or household against another member that is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm.”
Violence against parents, children, extended relatives, foster children or parents, and even just individuals who live in the same household (e.g., a roommate) may qualify as family violence, per Texas Penal Code § 71.004 and Texas Penal Code § 71.005. Domestic violence is a broader term that also involves harmful acts or threats of harmful acts toward people in specific relationships with the alleged abuser (Texas Penal Code § 71.0021), such as:
- A dating partner, including former dating partners
- A spouse, including former spouses
- A co-parent, as in the other parent of a shared child (both parents do not have to be together)
Within Texas’ family and domestic violence laws are three categories of offenses that a defendant may be charged with if suspected of abuse.
Different Types of Family and Domestic Violence Offenses
In Texas, family and domestic violence is separated into three categories:
- Domestic Assault: Texas Penal Code § 22.01(a)(2) defines domestic assault as “intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly [causing] bodily injury to another, including the person’s spouse.” This also includes threats and making physical contact in general. Domestic assault is not exclusive to relationship partners and may apply toward family and household members.
- Aggravated Domestic Assault: Texas Penal Code § 22.02 defines aggravated domestic assault as harmful acts or threats of harmful acts while the aggressor uses a deadly weapon, such as a gun or a knife. Defendants may face higher charges if the allegations against them involve the use of a weapon.
- Continuous Violence Against the Family: If a defendant has at least two previous offenses of family or domestic violence in a 12-month period, they may be charged with “continuous violence against the family.” Previous offenses do not have to involve the same individuals, just that the defendant has two offenses on their criminal record.
Common Types of Domestic Violence Charges in Addison
There are several types of domestic violence charges or criminal charges you could face in Addison. The penalties you can face for these convictions can also vary based on the type of domestic violence charge you are convicted of. Here are the most common types of domestic violence charges you could face and their respective penalties:
- A class C misdemeanor domestic violence conviction carries no jail or prison time and fines as high as $500
- A class A misdemeanor domestic violence conviction carries a jail term of up to one year and fines as high as $4,000
- A third-degree felony domestic violence conviction is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and fines as high as $10,000
- A second-degree felony domestic violence conviction is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and fines as high as $10,000
- A first-degree felony domestic violence conviction is punishable by up to 99 years in prison and fines as high as $10,000
Addison Domestic Violence Lawyer Near Me (214) 696-9253
A Family and Domestic Violence Lawyer Can Prepare Your Case for You
Facing charges for family or domestic violence can put defendants at risk of losing child custody or visitation rights if they are parents. Other penalties may include prison time, which can then affect the individual’s ability to find or keep employment, regain child custody rights, or maintain a good reputation in their community.
A lot can be at stake for an individual facing family or domestic violence charges, so you may want to consider hiring a lawyer from our firm to defend your case as soon as you can. Should you decide to work with an Addison family and domestic violence lawyer from Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, our legal team will offer various services to build your case, such as:
- Criminal Investigation: Our legal team can initiate a separate investigation from law enforcement to review whether the facts surrounding your case incriminate you. If not, we may create a defense argument that illustrates how the charges, your arrest, or any other circumstances in your case were unlawful. This may involve reviewing the arresting officer’s report, interrogation video footage, and other evidence law enforcement has collected.
- Evidence Collection: During our investigation, our attorneys may reach out to witnesses who can provide testimony for your case. Should other evidence exist that can support your case, such as surveillance footage that captured the alleged violence, we may retrieve this information for you.
- Legal Representation During Hearings: From the moment you retain one of our attorneys, we can send someone to your initial and pretrial hearings to petition for your bail, reduced charges, legal motions, and other court negotiations. Your attorney will then lead your case and appear in court to advocate for you. If possible, they may be able to negotiate a plea deal out of court, which may involve reducing or dismissing your charges.
- Legal Communications: Whenever someone reaches out for statements, you can protect your case by referring them to one of our attorneys. Our legal team will handle these communications so that you do not accidentally incriminate yourself. Additionally, we can negotiate with the alleged victim to sign an affidavit of non-prosecution. This is a legal document that confirms the victim no longer wants to press charges against the defendant.
Throughout your case, you can receive legal counsel from our legal team and explain your side of events without judgment. You may have defenses available to you, which our team can discuss with you after reviewing your case. Family and domestic violence cases must go through the court system, even if the alleged victim retracts their statements, so we aim to represent you fairly and advocate for your rights.
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Call Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg to Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney
If you are facing family and domestic violence charges in Addison, Texas, consider hiring a criminal defense attorney from Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg to represent you. Being accused of domestic violence could destroy your personal and professional reputations. Not to mention the criminal penalties you could face if you are found guilty of this criminal offense.
Whether there was a misunderstanding that needs to be resolved or you would like our team to collect evidence to dispute false allegations, our lawyers are prepared to advocate for your rights and innocence. Call today to get a free case review. A member of our team can discuss further how our Addison family and domestic violence lawyer can serve you.