Articles Posted in Domestic Violence

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This is the fifth and final in this blog series covering domestic violence in Placer County. The first four can be found here:

  1. The Placer County Domestic Violence Court and common domestic violence charges
  2. Victim and witness participation issues
  3. What to do if you’re involved in a domestic dispute and common defenses to domestic violence charges.
  4. Protective and restraining orders

This post will focus on sentence and probation in domestic violence convictions.

If you are convicted of a domestic violence charge, your sentence will depend on a number of factors. These include the particular crime you committed, any aggravating or mitigating circumstances that may exist, and the number of offenses you’ve committed.

Statutory Sentence

Misdemeanor domestic violence crimes are punishable by up to a year in jail, a fine, or both.

Felony domestic violence crimes carry a lower, middle, and upper term sentence. The amount of jail time you face varies depending on the facts and circumstances of each case.

For instance, felony Penal Code Section 273.5 is punishable by imprisonment in a state prison for two, three, or four years if probation is denied. Continue reading →

Published on:

This is the fourth in this blog series covering domestic violence in Placer County. The first three can be found here:

  1. The Placer County Domestic Violence Court and common domestic violence charges
  2. Victim and witness participation issues
  3. What to do if you’re involved in a domestic dispute and common defenses to domestic violence charges.

A protective or restraining order is a judicial degree that makes it a crime for the restrained person to defy the terms of the order. The two basic types of protective orders are civil and criminal.

Civil Protective Orders

A civil restraining or protective order is obtained, often on an emergency basis, by a person to prevent another person from harassing, disturbing, or contacting them

The civil order can also direct the restrained person to stay away from a home, vehicle, or school and can control who may live in the home, and who may have child custody and visitation rights.

To obtain a civil protective order, an applicant must show that she or he is in immediate and present danger of domestic violence based a recent incident of abuse or threatened abuse by the person to be restrained.

The violation of a civil protective order is a misdemeanor. Continue reading →

Published on:

This is the third in this blog series covering domestic violence in Placer County. The first post outlined the Placer County Domestic Violence Court and covered the most common domestic violence charges. The second post covered victim and witness participation issues. This post outlines the things you should do if you are involved in a domestic dispute, as well as common defenses to domestic violence charges.

When law enforcement officers respond to a domestic dispute, they often make assumptions about who they believe to be the aggressor and and who they believe to be the victim. Unfortunately, this can cause them to be biased in their investigation, and can lead to evidence and testimony that is hard to challenge later on. If you are involved in a domestic dispute, there are several things you can do to protect yourself.

Remain Silent

Do not reply to an officer’s questions and make sure you tell them you wish to speak to your attorney. This is imperative even if you did nothing wrong because the officer may not perceive things the way you do. Continue reading →

Published on:

This is the second in this blog series covering domestic violence in Placer County. The first post outlined the Placer County Domestic Violence Court and covered the most common domestic violence charges. This post will cover victim and witness participation issues.

Charging Decision

In many domestic violence cases, the alleged victim may no longer want their partner or loved one to face charges after they reconcile. In the interest of justice, however, prosecutors can still choose to pursue charges even if the parties involved would like to move on.

In such cases, the prosecution still has the burden of proving their case beyond a reasonable doubt—which is often difficult without the alleged victim’s cooperation and testimony. Continue reading →

Published on:

This is the first in a five-part blog series covering domestic violence crimes in Placer County. This post outlines the formation of the Placer County Domestic Violence Court and the Family Violence Unity of the Placer County District Attorney’s Office. It also covers the most common domestic violence offenses.

Placer County Domestic Violence Court

In response to increasing domestic violence incidents within the county and to increase batterer accountability and victim safety, Placer County established the Placer County Domestic Violence Court in 2005. A single judge is assigned to this court.

Additionally, the Placer County District Attorney’s Office created the Family Violence Unit, which is composed of five deputy district attorneys that specifically prosecute spousal, child, and elder abuse cases.

Continue reading →