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Ventura Domestic Violence Defense Attorney

Types of Domestic Violence in California

According to state law, domestic violence occurs when a person knowingly or recklessly uses physical force, or threatens such force, against an intimate partner (e.g. current or former spouse, domestic partner, fiancé(e), romantic parent, or the other parent of the person’s child). Abuse involving someone’s child and family members (either through blood or marriage) can also lead to domestic violence charges.

Domestic violence crimes in California are mostly “wobbler” offenses, which means they can be charged as either a felony or misdemeanor based on the circumstances of the crime, the severity of the alleged victim’s injuries, and/or the alleged offender’s criminal record.

Common domestic violence charges include:

  • Domestic battery - Inflicting force or violence on a romantic partner is a misdemeanor, which carries a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of no more than $2,000.

  • Corporal injury to a spouse or household member - Inflicting force or violence that causes a “slight” injury to a romantic partner is a felony, punishable by a maximum prison term of four years.

  • Child abuse - Inflicting injury or corporal punishment on a child is punishable by either a maximum one-year jail sentence or imprisonment for up to three years.

  • Elder abuse - Inflicting physical, emotional, or financial abuse on or neglecting a person who is at least 65 years old carries either a jail term of up to one year or a maximum prison sentence of four years.

  • Criminal threats - Making threats of serious harm is punishable by either a maximum jail sentence of one year or imprisonment for up to four years.

  • Stalking - Harassing a romantic partner to the point he/she is afraid of his/her safety or the safety of his/her family carries either a maximum one-year jail sentence or imprisonment for up to three years.

What Are California's Penalties for Domestic Violence?

Although you love your spouse, romantic partner, or family, disagreements may still occur. When an argument escalates into a physical altercation that results in law enforcement officials visiting your home, they are required to make an arrest, even if the alleged victim regrets his/her actions. It is important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you avoid the harsh criminal penalties associated with domestic violence in California.

The following are the consequences of a California domestic violence conviction:

  • A jail or prison sentence (including a mandatory minimum sentence)

  • Fines and/or restitution

  • Mandatory enrollment in domestic violence courses

  • A permanent criminal record

  • A restraining order

  • Loss of child custody rights

  • Loss of gun rights

  • Deportation for non-citizens

Whether it was all an accident or the alleged victim made false allegations against you, our Ventura domestic violence lawyer at Bentley Law can protect your rights and future throughout the legal process. We can thoroughly assess your case, determine your available legal options, and help you obtain the best possible outcome in your case.

Call (805) 210-8555 to schedule a free consultation to learn how we can help you.

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