The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports regular alcohol abuse as being one of the leading risk factors of domestic violence. Being accused of domestic violence can injure a person financially, professionally, socially, and, upon conviction, may face severe consequences. If you have been charged with domestic violence, an experienced domestic violence defense attorney at Moses & Rooth can help you through this difficult time.
Domestic violence by itself is not a defined crime, but falls within a category of crimes. Under Florida statute 741.28, domestic violence is an:
- aggravated battery
- sexual assault
- sexual battery
- aggravated stalking
- false imprisonment
- or a criminal offense that results in physical injury or death of a family or household member by another family or household member. Domestic violence can occur not only between married couples, but also between ex-spouses.
Alcoholism and Domestic Violence
If a person is suffering from alcoholism and is involved in a domestic violence situation, a defense attorney can recommend that the person seek counseling and treatment for their alcohol or substance abuse problems. This allows the person to get help not only for their addiction problem, but also to seek counseling for the underlying issues that may lead to the domestic violence.
Consequences of Domestic Violence
When a person is charged with domestic violence, they are held without bond until the first appear before a judge. Under Florida statute 741.283, if a person is found guilty of domestic violence and that person intentionally caused bodily harm to the other person, then the accused will spend a mandatory five days in jail. In Florida, a person found guilty of domestic violence will also have to attend a mandatory battery intervention program. The person may also have a temporary restraining order or injunction for protection issued against them. If these are issued, you will not be able to remain in contact with the alleged victim or return home if the victim is residing there. Also, if a person is found guilty of domestic violence, their record cannot be sealed or expunged.
Defenses to Domestic Violence
A person may be charged with domestic violence when they were simply trying to defend themselves from a family, household member or ex-spouse. An experienced defense attorney can present to the court the defense of self-defense in a domestic violence case when one exists.
There are many circumstances that may lead to a charge of domestic violence. When a person has a substance or alcohol abuse problem, the risk factors for domestic violence are increased. An experienced domestic violence defense attorney will recognize the extenuating circumstances and bring it to the attention of the court, so the accused can get the help they need. If you or a loved one has been accused of domestic violence, contact an experienced domestic violence defense attorney at Moses & Rooth so you or the loved one can put this behind you.