Domestic violence, domestic abuse, relationship abuse, or its more technical term, intimate partner violence (IPV), is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship. The abuse may be physical, psychological, emotional, financial, spiritual, or sexual. The common attribute or denominator of all these types of abuse is that they are used to assert power and control over the victim.
“Domestic violence” is abuse or violence committed against an adult or a minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or person with whom the offender has had a child or is having or has had a dating relationship. A “cohabitant” is one of two unrelated adult persons living together for a substantial period that results in some permanency of relationship. Courts consider many factors to determine whether persons are cohabiting including, but not limited to, the continuity and length of the relationship and whether the parties engaged in sexual relations while sharing the same living space.
Registered domestic partners have the same rights, protections, and benefits, as well as the same responsibilities, obligations, and duties under the law, as spouses. California domestic violence laws apply equally to heterosexual and same-sex relationships.
The penalties for domestic violence are severe and include probation, anger management, batterers’ treatment counseling programs, and jail or prison. Even if you are released on bail, you may be ordered not to return to your home and to stay away from your partner and/or your family. A conviction for assault or domestic violence can affect your rights to see your children, affect your property rights, and seriously affect your immigration status or result in deportation.
Currently, there are two shelters and programs for domestic violence and abuse in Riverside, California – one offers a hotline and the other offers an emergency shelter. Outside of Riverside, but still within a reasonable distance, there are 27 shelters and programs for domestic violence and abuse in other locales such as San Bernardino, Upland, and Redlands.
The general public tends to be prejudiced when it comes to the guilt of those accused of a violent domestic crime, presuming that the perpetrator is guilty. This contradicts a foundational aspect of the American criminal justice system that anyone accused of a crime is “innocent until proven guilty.” Nonetheless, many police, prosecutors, and the American public tend to treat the accused as “guilty until proven innocent.”
Domestic violence has far-reaching effects on those involved, including the alleged offender. It is not unusual for someone to be accused of committing an act of domestic violence although they are innocent. You or someone you know may have been arrested for assault and battery, accused by a spouse, lover or cohabitant of domestic violence or spousal abuse. You may have been served with a restraining order accused of domestic violence.
Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney is crucial to defend any charge of domestic violence. The advice, guidance, and representation of experienced criminal defense counsel may be crucial to achieving the best possible result in any criminal matter.
Don’t be victimized by an assault or a domestic abuse charge, especially if your actions were in self-defense. If you or someone you know has been arrested for assault or domestic violence, John Patrick Dolan has forty years of criminal defense experience. Contact Dolan Law Offices today at 760-775-3739 or 562-824-4007 to discuss your situation or find out more online here.