Most people associate domestic violence with the physical assault of a spouse or partner. But in Arizona, many crimes can be prosecuted as domestic abuse if the alleged victim fits into one of numerous qualifying categories. Domestic violence does not need to be physical to be a crime, and the accused does not need to reside with the accuser for it to be charged as such.
These charges carry misdemeanor criminal penalties at a minimum and may include felony penalties depending on the crime and the history of the defendant. Such convictions could limit a person’s job opportunities and affect their ability to seek or maintain custody of their children. One of the best ways to navigate these accusations is to retain an experienced Chandler domestic violence lawyer. The criminal defense attorneys at the Grand Canyon Law Group could protect your rights and future opportunities.
For a crime to be considered domestic violence, there must be a relationship between the alleged victim and the person accused. There are many types of relationships that qualify for the purposes of household violence charges.
The law does not define these relationships by gender, and anyone may be charged with domestic abuse against any other person regardless of gender dynamics. Under Arizona Revised Statutes, Title 13 §3601, these charges can be brought for certain crimes against:
If the alleged victim was pregnant at the time of the incident, the penalties potentially increase. If the alleged violence involved physical assault or a threat with a dangerous weapon, penalties may also be increased. Anyone accused of domestic violence should seek a local attorney immediately, as the consequences of conviction can be severe.
The law delineates multiple crimes that could come within the purview of domestic violence if the accuser or alleged victim meets the above criteria. Physical assault, negligent homicide, manslaughter, and murder could be charged as domestic abuse crimes if the alleged victim had a qualifying relationship with the accused.
However, many other crimes might be charged as household violence in certain circumstances, even if they do not involve physical harm. These include, but are not limited to:
A knowledgeable defense lawyer in Chandler could further explain how certain behaviors could be classified under domestic violence charges.
A person could be tried on domestic violence charges even if the alleged victim does not want to proceed with a case. District Attorneys often decide to go forward with prosecution in the absence of a cooperating accuser. Regardless of whether the alleged victim wants a case to go forward, conviction on these charges could affect many other aspects of your life beyond your relationships.
Don’t let your fate be decided by the prosecutor. You could face severe penalties or jail time without an experienced legal professional from the Grand Canyon Law Group to defend you against allegations. If you have been involved in an incident that resulted in household abuse, it is critically important to contact a Chandler domestic violence lawyer today.