Los Angeles Criminal Law Blog


Domestic Violence: Felonies, Misdemeanors, and Rights to Child Custody

Posted on: June 17, 2008 at 4:26 p.m.

Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorneys frequently encounter cases where there are claims of domestic violence and abuse. These typically take the falls within one of two different scenarios: (1)a long-lasting abusive relationship or (2)unpredictable violence by one or both parties at the time of break up. The first scenario is a lot more serious, and leads to serious felony charging. However, the the second scenariou is typically isolated and does not recur if the parties do not reconcile. Charges of domestic violence are aggressively pursuen by Los Angeles prosecutors in the wake of OJ, and other cases, where the aggressor was not stopped, punished, and counseled before the homicide.

As a result, Domestic violence and domestic disputes are never simply matters that can be sorted out. They often involve quite a bit of history, and as with all emotional matters, rarely is the truth black-and-white. When children are involved, matters become far more complicated for both sides of the dispute. The risk of violence may be greatest, in the course of child custody issues. Below is some useful information for individuals going through domestic disputes and/or domestic violence where children are involved:


- If a father is involved in a domestic dispute and faces a domestic violence charge, there is a great likelihood that the judge will award custody to the mother. In a 1991 Census, almost 38% of father's weren't granted visitation rights. Further, 90% of custody battles end up favoring the mother.
- Jail time for domestic violenceconvictions can range from 1 year for misdemeanor crimes, and three years in prison or more for felony convictions.
- If you are accused of domestic violence but the alleged victim attempts to withdraw the charge, you can still be tried and convicted.
- Restraining orders can often be hard to prove and often more difficult to enforce. They make make the winner feel good, but have no real impact on whether the other party continue calling or harrasing him or her, even if the police gets involved.
- There are support groups and battered women shelters for women who are suffering from violence in their homes.

Tagged as: california criminal laws, domestic violence pc 273_5







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