Domestic violence is one of the most emotionally difficult crimes that are commonly charged. It's also one of the most difficult to prove. Incidents leading to domestic violence accusations frequently take place behind closed doors, which means it's one person's word against the other's. That means law enforcement officers have to choose the person or the story they believe is more credible — and that introduces the possibility of bias, including gender-based bias. Some officers also "solve" the problem by arresting both people, which inevitably creates an injustice for the victim. Police will even arrest defendants over the objection of the partners they supposedly harmed.
To make matters worse, domestic violence penalties can start long before any conviction. In California, accusers have the right to get a temporary restraining order before the defendant is even released from jail, barring the defendant from his or her own home, property and family. If convicted, offenders face jail, prison or probation; domestic violence classes; further restraining orders; steep fines; and restrictions on their firearms rights. They also face social exclusion, potential problems at work and an uphill battle in any child custody fight.
To avoid these penalties after a fight that got out of hand, people facing domestic violence charges in southern California should call the Law Offices of Joseph M. Tysel right away.
California Domestic Violence Charges
The state of California defines domestic violence broadly. It is illegal to assault or batter anyone, but there are special penalties for abusing a spouse, girlfriend, boyfriend, "ex", child, other family member or anyone else you live with. Charges depend on the seriousness of the injury and whether you have any previous convictions. However, several domestic violence charges are "wobblers," which means prosecutors can use their own judgment about whether they should be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or a felony. The Law Offices of Joseph M. Tysel handles all charges related to domestic violence, including:
- Corporeal injury on a spouse or mate
- Battery on a spouse or mate, including simple battery and aggravated battery
- Spousal rape
- Violating a restraining order or order of protection
- Corporeal injury of a child
- Child endangerment
- Elder abuse
Officially, California law forbids domestic violence regardless of whether the accused is a man or a woman, the partners are married or both partners are of the same sex. In practice, however, some defendants find that law enforcement seems to be biased, especially when the accuser is male. If this is a factor in your case, it's even more important to have an experienced attorney by your side.
As I have stated, many domestic violence cases are "he said, she said" situations. This creates opportunities for accusers to use the legal system as a way to get revenge on a partner that hurt them emotionally or get the upper hand in a custody battle. Accusations can also stem from acts of self-defense when both people got physical, or accidents that were misinterpreted by officers.
The Law Offices of Joseph M. Tysel vigorously defend clients in these situations. Frequently, I can simply present the real facts to the jury, or evidence that the accuser has other motives, as well as demonstrating that the accused has no past history of violence. I also work to exclude irrelevant previous accusations that never led to a conviction and could unfairly bias the jury.
If you're accused of a domestic violence crime, you could face serious penalties that reach beyond your home life into your work and your freedom. That's why those accused should call the Law Offices of Joseph M. Tysel as soon as possible. For a consultation or to tell Me about your situation, you can call my main office in Santa Ana at (714) 953-7414 or send me a message through my website.