Domestic Violence Attorney

By  Kelly Legal Group

Domestic violence is a serious issue. Families are torn apart, children's lives are sometimes forever changed, and it can change the course of the victim and perpetrator's lives. It is important to get an attorney who knows the in and outs of the prosecutors and why taking a “deal” to just be done is not always the best approach. Sometimes justice comes when pushing a case forward to a jury trial.

What is domestic violence?

Domestic violence is defined as “an act by a member of a family or household against another member of the family or household that is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault or that is a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault, but does not include defensive measures to protect oneself.” Tex. Fam. Code § 71.004.

What is a domestic violence offense?

There is not a Texas penal code statute entitled “Assault — Domestic Violence.” Despite what offense may have been written on the magistrate’s warning or bail bond, the actual offense is typically for “Assault.” In Texas, an assault offense can range from a Class C misdemeanor (similar to traffic citation) to a felony. The charge is a Class C misdemeanor if the physical contact is merely regarded as “offensive” or “provocative.” In those situations, the suspect usually receives a citation and promises to appear later in a Municipal Court where the maximum punishment is by fine up to $500.

The vast majority of family violence cases are charged as Class A misdemeanors in which it is alleged the defendant caused “bodily injury” to the victim. In cases in which “serious bodily injury” is alleged, the offense is characterized as a felony. It also will be a felony if “the defendant has been previously convicted of an offense against a member of the defendant’s family or household.”