Fight For Your Reputation When Charged With Domestic Violence
Allegations of domestic violence can tarnish your reputation and damage your relationships. If someone has made allegations of domestic violence against you, you must fight the charges in order to repair the damage done and protect your future.
Clarissa Fernandez Pratt, Attorney at Law, represents clients in all manner of domestic violence charges. Clarissa has years of experience defending clients from across Bexar County in the courtroom and at the negotiating table. She began her career as a prosecutor and understands the way the other side builds its case. She is a domestic violence attorney who will take the time to listen to your side of the story, answer your questions and stand by you throughout your case.
Defining Domestic Violence In Texas
Texas law incorporates domestic violence into its assault and battery offenses that involve family and romantic partners. You may face domestic violence charges for acts of physical abuse against:
- A family member
- A household member
- The parent of your child
- A romantic partner or former romantic partner
Domestic violence also is not limited to assault. It can include sexual assault, aggravated assault with a weapon, kidnapping, manslaughter and murder. The most common incidents, however, involve a heated argument that gets out of control, leading to a physical altercation.
Additionally, there are several charges that only exist in a domestic family setting. These are instances of family violence that include:
- Assault by strangulation
- Second or subsequent domestic assault
- Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon
- Serious bodily injury against family members
As with all violent crimes, penalties can be quite severe for these charges. They vary based on the seriousness of the situation. Mounting a strong defense is important to defend yourself. The consequences can extend beyond jail time or a fine. You could lose custody of your children, lose the right to own a firearm or even have trouble finding housing.
Is Dating Violence Domestic Violence?
Dating violence is a kind of domestic abuse between individuals in what is considered a “dating relationship.” A dating relationship is one that Texas law defines as one that is “romantic or intimate in nature,” which the court will determine based on:
- How long the relationship lasted
- The general nature of the relationship
- The frequency of interactions between the individuals
- What kind of interactions the individuals had in their relationship
Domestic abuse and violence for a person in a dating relationship can lead to a protective order and other criminal consequences.
What To Know About Restraining Orders And Protective Orders
Technically, Texas does not have any restraining orders, but there are protective orders available that can work in a similar way. A protective order provides significant protections for people with a fear of violence from someone they know. Emergency protective orders are criminally enforceable, and a violation can lead to between 31 and 91 days in jail.
Can The Charges Be Dropped?
As with all criminal charges, the prosecution must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In a case of domestic violence, much of the evidence comes from your accuser’s testimony. If they change their story or you can prove that you were acting in self-defense or in defense of another, the prosecution may decide to drop the charges against you. Clarissa will go over the facts of your case with you to help you decide on the best course of action moving forward.
Find Answers To Your Questions
If you have questions, you can bring them to Clarissa during a free initial consultation. Contact her firm online or call her office in San Antonio at 210-920-2535.