Explaining Domestic Violence
What You Should Know
When violence occurs between strangers or people that are outside of the family, such violence is typically categorized as assault or battery; however, when someone makes threats against their spouse, or their boyfriend or girlfriend, or their family member, or when a person causes physical harm to one of these people, it is referred to as domestic violence.
Domestic violence is more than just physical abuse, it encompasses a wide range of behaviors and this can include making threats of physical harm such as when someone threatens to kill another, or cause physical harm to one of the family's pets. Domestic violence also includes emotional abuse, confining someone to a room or even tying them to a bed so they cannot leave on their own free will. It also includes the physical aspect such as slapping, hitting, punching, kicking, choking, and every other kind of physical abuse.
Domestic Violence Statistics
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in four women has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime. The Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that women account for 85 percent of the victims of intimate partner violence, and men account for approximately 15 percent of the victims. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports that children who witness violence between their parents or caregivers are at the greatest risk of transmitting violent behavior from one generation to the next. Despite the fact that domestic violence is a widespread problem that affects all socioeconomic classes, it is the most chronically underreported crimes. (U.S. Department of Justice Statistics, Bureau of Justice Statistics)
In Ohio, if someone is accused of attempting to or causing physical harm, they will most likely be charged with a misdemeanor offense punishable up to 6 months in jail and $1,000 in fines. If the person threatened to harm another, they face up to 30 days in jail and a $250 fine. If the victim suffered serious bodily harm, then the attacker may be charged with felonious assault. How someone is charged will depend on the facts surrounding the case and the extent of the injuries to the victim. However, in serious assault cases the defendant could face up to 8 years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines.
Protect Your Rights
At the Law Offices of Brian Jones, we handle domestic violence cases on a regular basis. We are well aware that these cases are not as black and white as they appear, and there are always two sides to every story. You may have been acting out of self defense, or your spouse or girlfriend may have called the police out of spite and only to get you in trouble. With domestic violence cases, it's important for you to know that even if the alleged victim decides to drop all charges, the prosecutor can still decide to press forward anyway. A conviction can be a serious problem; especially if you have children with the alleged victim for a conviction can certainly affect child custody and visitation. If you are facing domestic violence charges, we urge you to contact our firm at once so we can begin working to reduce your charges or get them dropped altogether.