Being accused of domestic violence can be a life-altering ordeal. The social and professional implications of an allegation like this can be substantial, on top of the serious sanctions you face in criminal and family courts.
You need guidance from a Bridgeport domestic violence lawyer to protect yourself and your rights. The legal team at Ruane Attorneys has a track record of success in these cases and could help you achieve a favorable result.
What is “Domestic Violence” Under State Law?
Any person who physically harms a family or household member or puts them in fear of imminent harm may have their ensuing criminal charge(s) categorized as “domestic violence.” A “family or household member” may be any of the following:
- A current or former spouse
- A current or former intimate partner
- An adoptive or biological child
- A biological co-parent of a child, regardless of past relationship history
- Any relative by blood or marriage, including a parent, grandparent, or grandchildren
- Any current or former roommate or housemate not related by marriage or blood
Besides assault, various criminal offenses may receive a “domestic violence” classification. These charges can range from minor misdemeanors like disorderly conduct to felony stalking, threatening, strangulation, and/or sexual assault. Violations of protective orders may also be prosecuted as felony domestic violence offenses if they involve the defendant assaulting, threatening, or otherwise harming the protected party. Our Bridgeport attorneys could further explain why a charge may be prosecuted as domestic violence.
Legal Procedures for Domestic Violence Offenses in Bridgeport
Specific criminal offenses labeled as domestic violence may be punishable by lengthy prison terms, steep fines, and other criminal sanctions. The domestic violence designation itself does not allow for courts to impose enhanced penalties against a defendant upon conviction. However, this designation does change the prosecutorial process in a few ways, as a local domestic violence lawyer could explain.
For one, preliminary criminal proceedings move much faster in domestic violence cases than in most other criminal cases. Someone arrested on suspicion of domestic violence will often be expected to appear in court on the next business day.
Additionally, anyone accused of a domestic violence offense may be subject to a temporary protective order meant to last from their arraignment until the conclusion of their trial. A standing criminal order may replace this if the case ends with a conviction. Depending on the situation, this order may impose significant restrictions on where a defendant can live, whether they can continue working at a particular place of enjoyment, and whether they can have any contact whatsoever with the protected party or parties.
Talk to a Bridgeport Domestic Violence Attorney About Legal Options
Law enforcement authorities take domestic violence allegations extremely seriously. An allegation alone could lead to weeks of stressful legal proceedings and restrictions on your rights and personal freedom. A conviction could carry life-altering criminal sanctions and severely damage your public reputation.
Trying to manage a case like this without a Bridgeport domestic violence lawyer is ill-advised. Schedule an initial consultation with an attorney and get the legal counsel you need. Call Ruane Attorneys today.