Domestic violence and assault charges are an extremely serious matter in Minneapolis, and, if you are convicted, you could be looking at severe penalties. In some cases, a domestic violence conviction could even result in jail time. As a result, if you have been charged with a crime that involves domestic violence, it is essential that you have experienced legal representation advocating for you throughout your criminal case.
When it comes to domestic assault charges, there are two sides to every story. Minneapolis domestic violence attorney Lauren Campoli understands the serious nature of domestic assault charges and can help you prepare a defense to your charge, or in the alternative, request a charge reduction or a lighter criminal penalty.
Legal Elements of a Domestic Assault Charge
Domestic assault is a misdemeanor charge in Minneapolis. In order for the state to obtain a conviction against you, it must satisfy certain legal elements beyond a reasonable doubt. Specifically, the state must prove:
- That the accused attempted to inflict some degree of bodily harm on someone in the household; or
- That the accused actually and intentionally inflicted some degree of bodily harm on another person living in the household; or
- That the accused committed some act with the specific intention of creating fear of imminent death or great bodily harm to a member of the household
For purposes of a domestic assault charge, “family and household members” include all of the following individuals:
- Former spouses
- Current spouses
- Individuals who are related by blood
- Individuals who currently live together
- Individuals who have lived together previously
- Individuals who have children in common
- Individuals who have previously dated
- Pregnant women and the alleged father of the unborn child
The burden of proving a domestic assault charge rests with the state. An experienced Minneapolis domestic violence attorney could help you demonstrate that the state failed to satisfy the necessary legal elements to prove its case against you successfully.
What is a Protective Order?
A court may enter a protective order in cases where a person’s safety may be threatened. The individual who petitions the court for a protective order is called the petitioner. A protective order could require the respondent to stay away from the petitioner and/or not to have any contact with him or her. The respondent might also be required to stay away from the petitioner’s place of employment, refrain from calling or texting the petitioner, and/or to stay away from the couple’s minor children.
When a petitioner first goes to court and requests that a protective order be issued, the respondent is usually not present. The court may enter a temporary protective order for a period of time. In cases where child custody, child support, or spousal support issues arise, a hearing may need to occur, during which time the respondent must be present. At the hearing, both sides can call witnesses and present evidence that favors their respective versions of the dispute.
Violating a protective order that has been put in place by a court is a very serious offense and can result in additional criminal charges and penalties if the respondent is found guilty or convicted. Courts look at protective order violations very seriously because the respondent is essentially ignoring a direct order from the court.
Potential Penalties for a Domestic Violence Conviction
A conviction for domestic assault can come with very serious consequences. Upon conviction, a judge could sentence you to a maximum of 90 days of incarceration, along with a maximum monetary fine of $1,000. If the domestic assault offense involved some form of suffocation or strangulation, the accused could be sentenced to a maximum of three years’ incarceration, and a maximum monetary fine of $5,000, upon conviction.
The court could also increase these penalties in the event the accused is a subsequent domestic violence offender. An experienced Minneapolis domestic violence attorney could represent you at your sentencing hearing and work to obtain the lightest sentence possible under your circumstances.
If you’re facing domestic violence and assault charges, you could be in serious trouble. Several legal considerations go into evaluating such a case. Hopefully, the details stated above have shed light on what you should know about the charges, protective order, and the associated penalties. Having a skilled Minneapolis criminal defense lawyer will work in your favor. Ensure you make the right decisions as you defend yourself and save your future.
Connect with an Experienced Minneapolis Domestic Violence Attorney Today
You should never face a domestic violence charge alone. Let Minneapolis domestic violence lawyer Lauren Campoli work with you to help you obtain the best possible outcome in your criminal case. To schedule a free case evaluation and legal consultation with a Minneapolis domestic violence attorney, please call us at (612) 352-9303 or contact us online today to learn more about how we could assist you.