Undoubtedly, Domestic Violence is a major problem throughout both Arizona and the United States. Each year, thousands of people are killed or injured by spouses, boyfriends, girlfriends and in extreme cases, even children. Because of the negative impact impact domestic violence has on society in general, police and prosecutors take an ultra aggressive approach in dealing with this category of criminal offenses.
Domestic Violence Law in Arizona
Arizona Law 13-3601 Defines Domestic Violence as:
A. any act that is a dangerous crime against children as defined in section 13-705 or an offense prescribed in section 13-1102, 13-1103, 13-1104, 13-1105, 13-1201, 13-1202, 13-1203, 13-1204, 13-1302, 13-1303, 13-1304, 13-1406, 13-1425, 13-1502, 13-1503, 13-1504, 13-1602 or 13-2810, section 13-2904, subsection A, paragraph 1, 2, 3 or 6, section 13-2910, subsection A, paragraph 8 or 9, section 13-2915, subsection A, paragraph 3 or section 13-2916, 13-2921, 13-2921.01, 13-2923, 13-3019, 13-3601.02 or 13-3623, if any of the following applies:
1. The relationship between the victim and the defendant is one of marriage or former marriage or of persons residing or having resided in the same household.
2. The victim and the defendant have a child in common.
3. The victim or the defendant is pregnant by the other party.
4. The victim is related to the defendant or the defendant's spouse by blood or court order as a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother or sister or by marriage as a parent-in-law, grandparent-in-law, stepparent, step-grandparent, stepchild, step-grandchild, brother-in-law or sister-in-law.
5. The victim is a child who resides or has resided in the same household as the defendant and is related by blood to a former spouse of the defendant or to a person who resides or who has resided in the same household as the defendant.
6. The relationship between the victim and the defendant is currently or was previously a romantic or sexual relationship. The following factors may be considered in determining whether the relationship between the victim and the defendant is currently or was previously a romantic or sexual relationship:
(a) The type of relationship.
(b) The length of the relationship.
(c) The frequency of the interaction between the victim and the defendant.
(d) If the relationship has terminated, the length of time since the termination.
Simply put, the offenses which may fall under the guise of domestic violence include:
- Abuse of a Child or Vulnerable Adult Abuse
- Aggravated Assault
- Criminal Trespass
- Custodial Interference
- Dangerous Crimes against Children
- Disorderly Conduct
- Interfering with Judicial Proceedings
- Kidnapping or Unlawful Imprisonment
- Negligent Homicide
- Sexual Assault
- Threatening and Intimidating
Police Response to Domestic Violence:
Usually, police believe they are obligated to arrest one party when called to investigate an incident of alleged domestic violence. Obviously there are many reasons for which police may make an arrest following a domestic violence incident. These include, probable cause to arrest a suspect or offender, multiple responses to the same household due to similar incidents or a desire to separate parties for a period to avoid an escalation of criminal behavior and possible injury to a victim.
Potential Penalties For Domestic Violence:
Depending upon the nature of the offense, whether someone was injured, a person's history, etc. there are many penalties associated with a Domestic Violence Conviction. Initially, a person charged with a domestic violence offense in Arizona risks being convicted of either a felony or misdemeanor charge. If convicted of a felony, an individual can be sentenced to prison or placed on probation. With respect to misdemeanor convictions, a person can be required to serve jail time and at a minimum, must be placed on probation. All domestic violence convictions carry mandatory monetary fees and also require participation in domestic violence counseling programs.
On some occasions, individuals charged with domestic violence offenses will be offered an opportunity to participate in a diversion program. Diversion programs offer people a chance to resolve their cases without having a permanent conviction on their record. Diversion can be completed after a guilty plea is entered but before an actual judgment of guilt is entered against someone or alternatively, in scenarios where prosecution is suspended for a period of time to allow someone to complete the required program.
Possible Defenses to Domestic Violence Charges:
On some occasions, domestic violence charges are not supported by fact or are even fabricated by someone who may be attempting to gain an advantage in divorce or child custody proceedings. As with any criminal charge, a person suspected of a domestic violence offense has the absolute right to plead "not guilty" and defend themselves at trial. The state must prove each an every element of a domestic voice charge beyond a reasonable doubt and produce witnesses and/or physical evidence to support make their case. Some of the defenses available to an individual charged with domestic violence include:
- self defense
- defense of a third party
- defense of property
Call (480) 833-8613 for a Free Consultation
Defend Your Legal Rights and Reputation
If you have been charged with Domestic Violence in Tempe, Phoenix, or any other city within Maricopa or Pina County, it is vital that you contact a highly skilled criminal lawyer immediately. Tempe domestic violence lawyer Raymond Kimble will recognize available defenses and has been defending people charged with these crimes for many years. Mr. Kimble knows how to prepare a solid defense, challenge the prosecution's evidence and negotiate a reduction or dismissal of the charges
With a seasoned Tempe criminal defense lawyer on your case, you will have your rights protected as your attorney fights to secure a favorable outcome on your behalf. Attorney Raymond Kimble has successfully represented hundreds of individuals throughout Arizona over the last twenty years who have been accused of domestic violence.