Domestic violence is a disturbing problem that Texas law takes seriously. Texas law considers any attack against a family member to be domestic violence.
There are several things that you should know if you are facing domestic violence charges. Understanding these important points might help you to decide what you are going to do for your defense.
#1: Domestic violence is often he-said-she-said based
The claims of domestic violence are usually based on one side’s word against the other side’s word. Of course, there are often visible wounds if there was physical violence in the picture. This can add another level of evidence, but this isn’t always true. When the case is he-said-she-said, things can get rather difficult.
#2: You can face misdemeanor or felony charges
Domestic violence charges in Texas are charged as either misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the circumstances. The charges can range from a class C misdemeanor up to a first degree felony. As you can tell, this is a wide range that leaves a lot of possibilities open.
#3: Incarceration and other legal penalties are possible
The amount of time you might face for incarceration depends on the charge you are facing. A class C misdemeanor carries up to a year in jail, but a first degree felony carries a minimum of five years up to a maximum of 99 years in prison. This is why having your defense strategy ahead of time is crucial.
#4: Collateral consequences can occur
You don’t face only legal consequences when dealing with domestic violence charges. You also face collateral consequences, which can include being labeled as a felon, having difficulties finding work, and not be able to enjoy every freedom that other Americans have. For example, your right to own a gun might be taken away if you are convicted of domestic violence.
#5: Your family life might suffer
Your family life might suffer because of an accusation of domestic violence. In many cases, a domestic violence accusation comes with protective orders that require the accused person to remain a specific distance from the alleged victim. It is also possible that the accused person will be ordered to remain away from one’s children or only given supervised visitations.
#6: Victims can’t drop the charges
Contrary to popular belief, the victim can’t just drop the charges if the victim and the accused person make up. Once the case is handed over to the prosecuting attorney, only the prosecution can decide to drop the case. It isn’t up to the victim, and it is possible for the charges to move forward without the victim’s cooperation in many cases.