Almost every couple or family has arguments and those arguments can get heated. But what happens if you are arrested because your significant other or a family member called the police and accused you of domestic violence? The legal process following an arrest can be complicated and foreign, even for people who have experience with the criminal justice system. You should know that the criminal defense lawyers at Koffsky & Felsen, LLC have the experience and commitment to help you.
Domestic Violence Arrests
Many domestic violence arrests come from a place of anger and confusion and not an actual violation of the law. The law in Connecticut defines “family violence” as the following:
- Physical harm, assault, or bodily injury, or an act that threatens such harm (can include a pattern of threats or stalking)
- Against your spouse, former spouse, parents of your children, anyone related to you by blood or marriage, someone you live with or formerly lived with, or someone you are dating or were formerly dating.
It’s important to note that the law specifically excludes verbal arguments and abuse from the “family violence” definition unless the danger of physical violence exists. Often, a heated verbal argument can cause one family member to call the police and accuse the other person of threats or present danger. Sometimes, a person may falsely accuse the other person of physical harm just to get the other person out of the house. In many situations, this results in an arrest, which initiates the process required by law of investigating and addressing family violence. If you’ve been accused of domestic violence, you should have qualified defense representation from the beginning.
Protective Order Hearings
In addition to the court hearings that follow an arrest, people accused of family violence may have to attend a protective order hearing. Courts often issue protective orders to keep family members apart to avoid further violence. These orders can have a huge impact on your life and take the following forms:
- Partial or limited orders that prohibit threatening contact between you and accuser
- Residential stay-away orders that allow contact, but prohibit you from entering the home of your accuser
- Full no-contact orders that prohibit any type of contact with your accuser
A residential stay-away order can keep you from returning to your own home if you share a residence with your accuser. A full no-contact order can completely change your life, especially if you also aren’t allowed to contact your children who live with your accuser.
Violating an order is a serious crime, making it important that you follow the court’s orders. Our attorneys can help you oppose unnecessary protective orders and attempt to limit the restrictions imposed on you.
Depending on the specific accusations in your case, you may face charges of criminal threatening, assault, stalking, harassment, or other relevant offenses. If convicted, your record will reflect that the conviction was related to family violence and you may be excluded from certain jobs in the future. You also risk criminal penalties including fines and jail time. In addition, a family violence-related conviction can also affect your ability to own or possess firearms. It’s essential that you have a defense attorney who knows how to protect you from harsh convictions and penalties.
Do Not Wait to Call Our Experienced Connecticut Criminal Defense Attorneys
At Koffsky & Felsen, LLC, our team will handle all aspects of your domestic violence case. It is important to have representation right away. You shouldn’t wait to call our office to talk to one of our experienced Connecticut criminal defense attorneys. Call today at 203-327-1500 for help.