A domestic violence charge can carry heavy penalties, so you should act quickly and take matters seriously. You are entitled to a robust defense, and hiring an attorney is a good way to ensure you make the most compelling arguments on your behalf. A Hurst domestic violence lawyer from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg is ready to assist you with every aspect of your case.
Domestic Violence Charges in Texas
Domestic violence charges can be filed against you for various crimes. Per TX Penal Code § 71.004, someone can be charged with domestic violence (called “family violence” in Texas) when they are accused of:
- Assaulting a family or household member
- Threatening violence against a family or household member
- Physically abusing a child
- Sexually assaulting a family or household member
- Committing violence against someone they are dating or have dated in the past
Any of these crimes can result in a domestic violence charge. Additionally, the severity of the charge can vary based on the circumstances and the accused’s history.
For example, a threat of violence from someone who has little to no criminal history might be treated as a misdemeanor. Assault with a weapon or an assault that leaves behind grievous injuries will be treated far more harshly, often charged as a felony. Finally, if you have a significant criminal history, a domestic violence charge is more likely to be bumped up to a felony charge with harsher penalties.
Penalties for Domestic Violence
Texas takes domestic violence charges seriously, and punishments can be quite harsh. Penalties vary based on the crime’s severity and other factors, but according to the Texas Politics Project, this is what you can generally expect:
- Class A misdemeanor: Up to 1 year in jail and $4,000 in fines
- State jail felony: Up to 2 years in jail and $10,000 in fines
- Third-degree felony: Up to 10 years in prison and $10,000 in fines
- Second-degree felony: Up to 20 years in prison and $10,000 in fines
- First-degree felony: Up to life in prison and $10,000 in fines
It is important to know what is on the line. This is why we recommend that Hurst residents who are charged with domestic violence hire a lawyer. The state will have plenty of legal resources on its side, so hiring a lawyer can even the playing field a bit.
How Your Lawyer Can Help You
Your lawyer can help you form a defense and fight your domestic violence charges. Your lawyer will:
- Answer your questions: This can be a stressful situation, and you probably have questions. Your attorney will tell you anything you need to know and keep you updated on any progress in your case.
- Handle communications for you: Your attorney will also handle most communications for you, speaking to the prosecution on your behalf and reporting back to you if there are any plea offers or other news.
- Prepare you for testimony: Testifying before a judge or jury may be necessary for your defense. We understand this can be a nerve-racking experience. We will work with you and make sure you know what to expect when testifying in court or in depositions.
- Collect evidence: We have investigators who can help gather evidence to aid in your defense. Whether there are witnesses to interview, alibis to investigate, or security footage to review, we will do everything possible to gather the evidence and counterevidence needed to aid in your defense.
- Show the state has not met its high burden for proof: A domestic violence charge is serious, and the state has to meet a high burden of proof to convict. Your lawyer will do their best to show that the prosecution has not met this standard and you should therefore be found “not guilty.”
- Negotiate plea agreements and reduced sentences: If the case is unlikely to go your way, a lawyer may be able to mitigate the damage. Your attorney can negotiate a plea agreement or try to reduce your sentence. We can also help you enroll in counseling courses or anger management classes, showing the prosecution that you are willing to make positive life changes and potentially improving your chances of receiving a more lenient sentence.
- Help you with professional consequences: If you have a professional license in Texas, regulators in your industry might come after you if you are charged with a crime like domestic violence. Our lawyers can help you deal with these professional consequences.
Randall B. Isenberg has more than thirty years of experience working as a prosecutor, a state judge, and a defense attorney. We have seen these types of cases from all sides, and we will do our best to form an effective defense for you based on the facts of your case.
Hurst Domestic Violence Lawyer Near Me (214) 696-9253
Forming a Defense Against Domestic Violence Charges
Defenses against a domestic violence charge can vary based on the circumstances of your case. Most affirmative defense strategies focus on one of the following:
- Self-defense or defense of others: If you were protecting yourself or another household member, that could serve as a basis for your defense.
- Mistaken identity: If possible, we can try to show that you are being accused of domestic violence by accident. The complainant has made a bad identification, and it was someone else who committed violence against them.
- Insanity or temporary insanity: Showing that you temporarily lost control and were not yourself at the time of the incident may be able to assist in your defense.
- A false accusation: Sometimes, people file false accusations. If your lawyer can show that the complaint has no merit, they will.
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Schedule a Case Consultation
You are not required to hire a lawyer to defend you from domestic violence charges, but we strongly recommend it. At the very least, contact the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg and ask about our complimentary case consultations. This is the perfect chance to learn more about how a domestic violence lawyer in Hurst can aid you in your defense.