Domestic violence charges are not something to be taken lightly. A conviction can have serious effects on your way of life. Unfortunately, these charges sometimes rely on he-said-she-said testimony, which can be difficult to fight back against without the help of a seasoned legal professional. If you or someone close to you faces domestic violence charges, it is crucial to seek help from an attorney. A St. Louis Park domestic violence lawyer could assess your case and work with you to build a robust defense.
Types of Domestic Violence Cases
Most domestic violence cases are classified as “domestic assault,” which is defined under Minnesota Statutes §609.2242(1). Any act of violence or act committed with the intention of causing fear of immediate harm or death to an intimate partner, family member, or household member could be considered domestic assault. Some of the common examples of domestic violence include:
- Verbal, physical, emotional, or financial abuse
- Extreme controlling behavior
- Sexual assault
An individual accused of any type of domestic assault could face serious consequences under state law, which is why it is crucial for anyone facing charges of this nature to get in touch with a St. Louis Park lawyer as quickly as possible. An experienced attorney could assess a case, determine whether the actions in question constitute domestic violence, and get started building a tailored defense.
Penalties for a Domestic Violence Conviction
A domestic violence conviction may result in a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or felony on a person’s permanent criminal record. The severity of the consequences and penalties will depend on many circumstances.
First-Time Domestic Assault Charges
A conviction of first-time domestic assault could result in up to 90 days in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. A person who is found guilty of domestic violence will also receive a misdemeanor conviction on their permanent record. The law will also bar any person who gets a domestic violence conviction from owning or possessing a firearm for a minimum of three years.
Second-Time Domestic Assault Charges
A second-time domestic assault offense is a gross misdemeanor. If a person violates the domestic violence statute three times within ten years, they face a felony conviction on their permanent record.
Domestic Assault with a Firearm
There are additional penalties for individuals who face domestic violence charges involving a firearm. If the court finds the person facing charges used or owned a gun at the time of the assault, state laws will bar them from owning, operating, or being in possession of any firearm for a period of no less than three years. A domestic violence lawyer in St. Louis Park could provide more guidance on the types of charges and their accompanying penalties.
Reach Out to a St. Louis Park Domestic Violence Attorney
If you are facing domestic violence charges, it is in your best interest to reach out to a seasoned attorney right away to work on your defense. Domestic violence cases are often sensitive matters with severe and lasting repercussions. It is never wise to take on the criminal court system alone and without the help of a legal professional.
An experienced St. Louis Park domestic violence lawyer understands how the criminal court process works and could defend your rights at trial. Give us a call today to get started.