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How to Handle Domestic Violence Charges

How to Handle Domestic Violence Charges

How to Handle Domestic Violence Charges

Domestic violence is among the most common crimes that are overcharged. Many cases are reliant on testimony, These charges are taken very seriously and have potentially severe ramifications. If you were accused, you might feel tempted to try and clear up the matter with the other party involved. But doing so can worsen your situation, so before acting, speak to a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney to learn how you may fight the charges. 

If you were accused of domestic assault in Missouri, call Scott Hamblin immediately to talk about your case with an attorney. We can provide information that pertains specifically to your case. 

Missouri Domestic Violence Laws

In Missouri, domestic violence is defined as threats of or carrying out violent actions against a family or household member, including a child, spouse, relative or romantic partner. Domestic assault may be charged even in cases where the individuals no longer live together or if their relationship status has changed. The altercations also do not have to be physical: verbal threats that make the other individual fear for their own safety may lead to charges depending on the situation. 

Charges are categorized by four degrees, with the first degree carrying the most significant ramifications. All charges can lead to various repercussions, although the exact consequences vary case by case. Defendants should be aware of the potential charges:

  • Fourth Degree: As a Class A Misdemeanor, the defendant faces up to a year in prison and fines up to $2,000. Repeat offenders may face up to four years of jail and fines up to $10,000. 
  • Third Degree: A domestic assault charge in the third degree is categorized as a Class E Misdemeanor and may result in four years of jail and fines up to $10,000.
  • Second Degree: The defendant may face a prison sentence of up to seven years and a fine of $10,000. 
  • First Degree: Knowingly inflicting or attempting to inflict serious harm can result in no less than 5 years and up to 15 years in jail. If the charges are considered a Class A felony, the defendant risks between 10 to 30 years in jail, or even a life sentence.   

Since there is significant variation in the outcome of a domestic violence allegation, the defendant needs to contact an attorney at the soonest opportunity to begin formulating an effective defense. Scott Hamblin provides dependable guidance and can help you seek a feasible resolution to your case. 

Will I Be Arrested Immediately After an Accusation?

The case begins as soon as one party reports the alleged abuse to law enforcement. Typically, domestic violence allegations warrant an arrest, known as a mandatory arrest law. However, Missouri does not uphold this law. The officer is allowed to use his or her own discretion when responding to an alleged domestic violence situation. If no arrest is made, then a report describing the situation will need to be submitted immediately. Multiple calls within a 12-hour period will require an arrest, no matter the exact circumstances. 

Contact a Criminal Defense Lawyer Right Away

Domestic violence allegations are not taken lightly in the state of Missouri. Charges can have lasting impacts on the defendant’s life. Call criminal defense attorney Scott Hamblin immediately to protect your rights if you were accused of domestic violence. 

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