Most types of domestic violence charges often start with calls to the police during a fight or argument between partners in the same household. While domestic violence (DV) charges are often based on physical violence, the Georgia DV act does not require bruises or injuries. Additionally, domestic violence charges are not limited to those with children or married couples.
Having a domestic violence charge can alter your life in negative ways. These include damage to your reputation, loss of child custody, loss of employment, and exclusion to your home. If you have been charged with domestic violence, immediately contact our Union City domestic violence defense attorney.
While the domestic violence law in Georgia is complicated, attorney Gil is well-versed in Georgia criminal law and will represent you and fight for a favorable outcome. He has handled hundreds of domestic violence cases.
What Happens When You Are Charged With Domestic Violence?
A simple assault is enough ground for a domestic violence charge in Georgia. If you are charged with domestic violence, you can be arrested, be served with a temporary protective order (TPO), and be barred from going to your home unless it is under police supervision to collect necessities or get your clothes.
Criminal courts take domestic charges seriously and often impose strict penalties to protect family members from harm.
If domestic charges are brought against you, you risk being placed on a restraining order, losing access to your family, and facing jail time and penalties. If you are convicted of DV, your reputation can be ruined. You may have difficulty getting employed since most Georgia employers run a criminal background check.
A domestic violence charge is a grave matter. You need to hire an expert criminal defense attorney to protect your rights. Please call the Law Offices of Gilbert Sperling, III, P.C. at 404-418-7816 today and book a free consultation.
What Are Defenses in a Domestic Violence Case?
Domestic abuse allegations are not taken lightly in Georgia. There are multiple defenses you can use to fight a domestic violence charge. It would be best to work with our skilled Union City criminal defense lawyer to ensure you beat these charges.
Here are some common defenses to a criminal domestic violence charge.
Violence Was Minor
When charged with domestic violence, you can argue that the violence was minor, provided the victim is not significantly hurt. This may result in a lesser sentence.
Violence Was Accidental
It is possible to argue that violence was accidental. This defense may work if you have proof.
This is a common affirmative defense and is often successful if you have proof of the other party engaging in violent acts. Prior police reports or an account of the same from neighbors, relatives, or children will suffice.
Under the O.C.G.A § 16-3-21, you are justified in using force or threatening someone if it is necessary for defending yourself. However, the method of self-defense you employ should match the situation.
Lack of Evidence
Typically, investigations are conducted to establish whether there is sufficient evidence to support a domestic violence charge. The case may be dropped if there is no evidence to back up the charge.
Audio and video recordings can come in handy in proving a false accusation. A skilled domestic violence attorney can help you collect evidence and establish that the domestic violence charge is based on a false allegation.
Contact our skilled Georgia criminal defense lawyer if you have been accused of committing domestic violence. The Law Offices of Gilbert Sperling, III, P.C. will evaluate the weaknesses and strengths of the case against you and let you know your available defenses. We will also discuss any possible negative consequences following a domestic violence conviction and discuss your options.
What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Georgia?
Domestic violence is a severe offense in Georgia. The Georgia Commission on Family Violence statistics shows that about 1,380 Georgians lost their lives to domestic violence between 2010 and 2019.
According to the Georgia Family Violence Act, domestic violence is defined as a criminal act and includes stalking, battery, simple assault, simple battery, and assault.
The penalties for domestic violence can permanently affect your life. The following are some of the possible punishments.
False Imprisonment or Kidnapping
Confining or detaining an individual against their will in Georgia is punishable by up to 10 years or more in jail.
Stalking or Aggravated Stalking
Contacting another individual to intimidate or harass them is considered stalking. A first-time stalking offense is punishable by a $1,000 fine and up to twelve months in jail. Aggravated stalking is punishable by a $1,000 penalty and 1-10 years in prison.
Aggravated Battery or Assault
When domestic violence causes serious bodily harm, involves the intent to murder or rape, or involves a weapon, it can lead to a charge of aggravated assault and battery. The penalty is 5 to 20 years imprisonment.
Simple Battery or Assault
When committed against those living in the same house and against an intimate partner, child, parent, or spouse, simple battery or assault can be punishable by a $5,000 fine and up to a year in jail. Subsequent domestic violence convictions are treated as felonies, and you could be sentenced to 5years in prison.
Violating a Protective Order
If you violate a protective order, you will be held in contempt and may face arrest. There is a possibility that additional time will be added to your already imposed sentence. The court may charge you with a felony or misdemeanor depending on whether your violation of the protective order was non-violent or violent.
Domestic Violence Restraining Orders
In Georgia, domestic violence protective orders are broken into two categories, a family violence protective order and a temporary ex parte order. The latter protects a victim from their abuser till the court hearing, while the former can last an extended period.
If you violate a protective order, you will be held in contempt and may face arrest. There is a possibility that additional time will be added to your already imposed sentence. The court may charge you with a felony or misdemeanor depending on if your violation of the protective order was non-violent or violent.
How Can an Experienced Union City Domestic Violence Defense Attorney Help?
Working with a skilled and experienced Union City domestic violence defense attorney is your best chance at beating domestic violence charges.
Attorney Gil at the Law Offices of Gilbert Sperling, III, P.C. has years of experience handling similar cases and will better explain the charges you are facing and the process awaiting you. Here is how Attorney Gil can help you.
Easier and More Favorable Plea Bargaining
If your case proceeds to court, your domestic violence attorney in Union City can help you enter a plea bargain. This process allows you multiple options, including a significantly reduced sentence, decreased fines, and joining a diversion program.
Better Circumstances for Your Children
An overly harsh emergency protective order (EPO) impacts your children negatively as it prevents you from speaking to or seeing them till your case is finalized. Attorney Gil can help you receive a more lenient EPO and prevent the case from being dragged out. This will ensure you do not have to go for a prolonged period without speaking to or seeing your kids.
Can Help You Receive a More Lenient EPO
The police obtain an EPO immediately after you are arrested with domestic violence charges. An EPO stays active until you are prosecuted and can be no contact or peaceful contact. When you work with a lawyer, they can negotiate your EPO and ensure you get a peaceful EPO that grants you contact with your family.
Will Fight for the Best Outcome
At the Law Offices of Gilbert Sperling, III, P.C., we know the ins and outs of domestic violence cases and how to fight for the best outcome in your case, whether that means reduced penalties or an acquittal.
Attorney Gilbert Sperling has helped many clients get their cases dismissed or beat the charges. If you are convicted, he can help you minimize the negative consequences, whether or not this is your first or subsequent offense.
Contact an Experienced Domestic Violence Lawyer in Union City Today!
When you are charged with domestic violence, you risk losing your reputation and liberty and facing severe punishment. A criminal conviction for domestic assault, criminal threats, or domestic battery in Georgia may result in mandatory domestic violence counseling sessions, temporary restraining orders, personal conduct orders, large fines, mandatory alcohol classes, or even jail.
For that reason, it is imperative that you have an experienced domestic violence defense attorney handling the case from the earliest possible moment. Attorney Gil is recognized as being among the best domestic violence defense lawyers in Union City.
To learn more about the various defenses for your case and to schedule a free case review, contact The Law Offices of Gilbert Sperling, III, P.C. at 404-418-7816. We can be reached 24/7. We are committed to helping every client get the best possible outcome in their cases.