Due to the increase in domestic abuse cases over recent years, law enforcement and prosecutors aggressively pursue these cases. If you have been accused of or charged with household abuse, it is imperative to speak with a knowledgeable Irvine domestic violence lawyer.

Our experienced criminal defense attorneys at The Law Office of Scott D. Henry have over 40 years of combined household violence defense experience. We have dedicated our careers to defending those facing criminal charges because we believe everyone is innocent until proven guilty. We understand that there are two sides to every story and genuinely want to make sure your side is heard.

What is Considered Domestic Violence in Irvine?

California Penal Code 273.5 PC defines domestic violence as mental, physical, or verbal abuse toward a member of the perpetrator’s household. It typically occurs between spouses or domestic partners but can also involve children, parents, siblings, and roommates. This crime is aggressive and violent in nature and can have lifelong adverse effects on the alleged victim. Some actions that may constitute domestic violence include:

  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Intimidation
  • Isolation
  • Kidnapping
  • False Imprisonment
  • Stalking
  • Economic Abuse
  • Emotional Abuse
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Psychological Abuse

Domestic abuse allegations are taken very seriously by local law enforcement, prosecutors, and judges. Even if you have only been accused of domestic violence, you may face immediate serious consequences, and therefore should speak with an attorney in Irvine as soon as possible.

Penalties for Domestic Abuse

Domestic violence (DV) is a “wobbler,” which means it can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Your case’s details, including the nature and extent of the alleged victim’s injuries, determine how it is charged. In Irvine, misdemeanor charges are punishable by a maximum of one year in jail and a fine of up to $6,000. Felony domestic abuse charges are punishable by a maximum of four years in prison, felony probation, and substantial fines.

Other penalties may include:

  • A restraining order
  • Loss of child custody
  • A mandatory 26-week anger management course
  • A mandatory 52-week rehabilitation program
  • Restitution to the alleged victim

A household abuse conviction is permanently on an individual’s criminal record and can surface anytime a background check is performed. This can make it challenging to find employment or housing or obtain professional licensing. Depending on you the circumstances of your domestic abuse case, Scott D. Henry and his team of lawyers in Irvine could negotiate with prosecutors to have your charges and penalties reduced.

Restraining Orders

A restraining order, also known as a protective order, is issued by the court to prevent the named individual from threatening, harassing, stalking, or physically abusing another individual. The terms and prohibited actions are specific to the circumstances of the DV incident. A restraining order could require the individual to vacate their home, prevent them from seeing their children, prohibit them from visiting certain public places, and require them to surrender their firearms. There are three levels of protection:

  • Emergency Protective Order issued when an officer believes there is imminent danger of domestic violence, child abuse, or elder abuse. An EPO is valid for five business days or seven calendar days from its issuance, whichever is earlier.
  • Temporary Restraining Order A TRO is valid for two to three weeks. Before it expires, the court holds a hearing to decide whether the order should be made permanent.
  • Permanent Restraining Order – a PRO can be in effect for up to three years. The court can extend the order if it finds an extension is warranted. A court hearing must take place before a PRO can be issued.

California Penal Code 273.6 PC makes it a crime to violate a protective order. There are several defenses an attorney may pursue for an alleged restraining order violation. Effective arguments include a lack of intent, a lack of knowledge of the restraining order, and a false accusation.

A restraining order can have long-lasting adverse effects on you and your household. A restraining order goes into effect the moment it is issued by the court, so it is essential to take immediate action to protect your rights, and contact a skilled domestic violence attorney in Irvine right away.

Speak with an Irvine Domestic Violence Attorney Today

If you face domestic abuse charges, it is imperative to speak with a leading Irvine domestic violence lawyer at The Law Office of Scott D. Henry. Our legal team has dedicated our careers to defending those faced with serious criminal charges. We have in-depth knowledge and understanding of how these cases are investigated and prosecuted. This allows us to build a unique and proactive defense strategy and ensure your rights, dignity, and reputation are protected.

Please contact our law firm today for a free consultation with no obligation. During your consultation, one of our experienced attorneys could discuss the specifics of the charges you face, explain your legal rights and options, and determine what immediate steps to take to help you obtain a favorable resolution for you and your family.

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