What Happens Following Domestic Battery Charges in Nevada?
Domestic battery violence charges are a serious matter in the State of Nevada. These charges start with a basic assault or battery allegation, but the event in question also must have involved some type of physical contact or assault that resulted in the victim experiencing pain or being injured.
In addition, a domestic battery charge requires some type of domestic relationship between the accused and the alleged victim, meaning the parties must have some type of family relationship, including spouses, children, housemate or relationship where the parties dated.
What to Do Following an Arrest for Domestic Battery
After being arrested for a domestic battery, certain steps can help protect the rights of the defendant and can help prepare a defense if charges are later filed. The first of these steps is, of course, contacting an attorney who can help represent the defendant immediately.
In addition to contacting a lawyer, the following steps can be helpful:
Take pictures of injuries sustained during the physical altercation. If a defense needs to be raised that the defendant acted in self-defense, pictures of the wounds should be able to indicate that. The police may have taken pictures during the arrest, but bruises may develop or darken over time so take pictures of any injuries over the course of the next few days and give them to the defense attorney as soon as possible.
Follow any protective or restraining order issued against the defendant after the arrest. Normally, a restraining order will be issued after the arrest and altercation, which will prohibit contact with the alleged victim. Even if the defendant disputes fault, it is always advisable to continue to follow the restraining order. This advice is best even if the victim attempts to contact the defendant.
In the meantime, if the defendant wants to dispute the restraining order, it is best to have an attorney file a motion to modify the restraining order. Do not violate it. Go through legal channels to properly fight it.
How to Fight a Domestic Battery Charge
All hope is not lost just because someone is facing a charge for domestic battery. If false allegations are being made against the defendant and he or she dies not fight the allegations, this can negatively affect the individual in many ways. It can affect their right to own a firearm, the ability to get employment, and even the right to stay in the country if the accused is here on an immigration status.
It is advisable that the individual accused contacts an attorney as soon as the arrest is made to prepare a defense to best fight these charges. Common defenses to domestic battery can include:
The battery occurred in self-defense, and the alleged victim was the attacker;
The battery resulted from a long history of physical abuse committed by the alleged victim against the accused, essentially at a point where the accused anticipates more abuse and reacts to this anticipation;
No battery occurred at all;
The allegations have been fabricated by the alleged victim for revenge or some other benefits to the accused.
Properly preparing a defense to a domestic battery requires evidence in support of these above statements.
Keep in mind that it is up to the prosecutor to prove his or her case that the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. However, the accused should not simply assume that just because he or she believes he or she is innocent that the prosecutor will not be able to successfully prove the case to a judge or jury.
It is for this reason that a defense attorney is needed to put together the evidence and argument required to properly fight and defeat the charges.
In addition to attempting to defeat the charges, if the defendant is not able to completely do this, a defense attorney can negotiate with the prosecution to plea down the charges to the following:
A misdemeanor battery;
The misdemeanor of unconsented touching;
Breach of the peace, which is also a misdemeanor;
Agreement to treatments in lieu of jail time, such as anger management or counseling;
Dismissal of charges.
Domestic Battery Penalties
The penalties for domestic battery in the State of Nevada often include the following:
First Domestic Battery Offense: The first domestic battery offense is considered a misdemeanor and involves a maximum of six months in jail, a maximum fine of $1,000, and/or 48 to 120 hours of community service, as well as domestic violence counseling.
Second Domestic Battery Offense: A second domestic battery charge is also a misdemeanor offense, with a maximum jail sentence of six months in jail, a maximum fine of $1,000, 100 to 200 hours of community service, and/or a longer required domestic violence counseling requirement for up to a year.
Third Domestic Battery Offense: If the accused is facing a third domestic battery charge, the offense is now a Category C felony. The accused stands to face one to five years in prison, possible fines up to $10,000 and is not eligible for probation.
Battery Domestic Violence with Strangulation: This offense is also a Category C felony. The accused, if found guilty, will receive a sentence of one to five years in prison and a mandatory fine of $15,000.
Battery Domestic Violence Resulting in Substantial Bodily Harm: If this offense is committed and no deadly weapon is used, it is a Category C felony with required sentencing of one to five years in state prison and a mandatory fine of $10,000.
Battery Domestic Violence with a Deadly Weapon: If battery domestic violence is committed with a deadly weapon, but no substantial bodily harm occurred, it is considered a Category B felony with mandatory sentencing of two to ten years in state prison and a mandatory fine of $10,000.
Battery Domestic Violence with Deadly Weapon and Substantial Bodily Harm: If substantial bodily harm occurred from the battery domestic violence, this offense is also a Category B felony with a required sentence of one to 15 years in state prison and a mandatory fine of $10,000.
Contact Us Today
If you are the victim of domestic violence or have been accused of committing a domestic violence battery, let Dan and his team go to work for you. Call 24/7 to schedule a free consultation. Call us today at (702) 848-5000