Domestic Violence (DV) charges are taken very seriously by prosecutors. Because the violation is against the People of Florida, even if the accuser wants to drop the charges, the prosecutor may decide to go forward with the case. This is especially true when there are additional witnesses.
Domestic Violence Battery in Florida is defined as an actual and intentional touching or striking of another person without consent, or the intentional causing of bodily harm to another person. Specifically, it is a battery with the added requirement that it involve a family or household member.
Domestic Battery is a first-degree misdemeanor. Penalties may include up to one year in jail or up to twelve months’ probation. There can also be a $1000 fine imposed. Additional mandatory penalties in a DV battery can include:
Common defenses in Florida Domestic Violence cases include:
False Allegations – Sometimes, a client is falsely accused because of other collateral matters such as child custody battles as part of a break up or divorce. This defense may be applicable if false allegations are made in an effort to gain some time of legal or moral advantage.
Defending Others – If you are accused of DV but your engagement was because you were trying to prevent someone else from harm, this defense may be available.
Self Defense – Did the alleged victim actually strike first and your response was nothing more than to defend yourself? This is often at issue in these types of cases.
Lack of Intent – If you did not have the intent to batter someone or the allegation of violence was the result of an accident, this defense may be available.
Consensual confrontation or mutual combat – Both parties were engaged in the altercation and it’s legally impossible to identify the primary aggressor.
If you are facing a charge of Domestic Violence Battery in Charlotte County, Florida, you should consult with an attorney right away. The attorneys at O’Halloran and Foley have substantial experience with domestic violence cases. Call us to discuss your options and defense strategy. The law recognizes that a lot of these cases are one-time mistakes that won’t be repeated. So, even if the case can be proven, you may be eligible for diversion, which ensures that a charge of Domestic Violence never goes on your record.