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Domestic Violence Charges and Sentencing

An arrest for domestic violence can hurt your ability to gain custody of your children. Call today to schedule a consultation with a lawyer to learn more about your options today.

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Domestic Violence Charges and Sentencing

Most domestic violence charges can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor. A defendant charged with a felony can serve significant time in prison, whereas a defendant charged with a misdemeanor may serve only a short jail term or be required to pay a fine, attend counseling or be put on probation. Contact Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg in Dallas, TX, today to schedule a consultation with a criminal defense attorney to discuss your options.

Misdemeanor or felony?

Whether a crime is a felony or a misdemeanor is determined by the seriousness of the crime and the relevant state laws. In many jurisdictions, acts that result in serious injuries are charged as felonies. Cases with no injury or slight injury are charged as misdemeanors. A prosecutor may consider prior violent acts by the defendant to determine the level of crime to charge.

Misdemeanor penalties

Sentencing for misdemeanor domestic violence convictions differs state to state. The penalties also depend on the specific facts of each case. The court will consider prior convictions, whether the abuser was on probation or parole, the local community's attitude toward the crime and any mitigating or aggravating circumstances. Some of the penalties that may attach to misdemeanor domestic violence include:

  • Probation
  • Mandatory treatment programs
  • Short to moderate jail sentences
  • Fines
  • Restitution to the victim

In many states, misdemeanor defendants may face up to a year in the county jail plus a significant fine for each charged offense, but judges may be more lenient for first time offenders.

Felony sentencing

Penalties for felony convictions are more serious than for misdemeanors, and vary greatly by state, by the severity of the crime and by the particular circumstances of each case. Generally, penalties range from shorter prison terms and moderate fines for less severe felonies to life sentences and large fines for more serious offenses. States with the death penalty may seek it in cases of domestic violence that result in death.

Speak to a domestic violence lawyer

Contact Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg in Dallas today to schedule a consultation with a criminal defense attorney who can explain the domestic violence laws in TX and how they apply to your situation.

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