Felony Defense Lawyer Grand Rapids MI
A felony defense lawyer in Grand Rapids, Michigan knows that national domestic abuse statistics are very alarming. In many states, there are often more victims of domestic violence than there are any other types of violent crime victims. According to national statistics, a woman is beaten every 15 seconds and two out of every five women who are murdered are killed by their husbands.
Because of these alarming statistics, law enforcement and the courts take any accusation of domestic violence very seriously. Where once upon a time the police would look the other way when a woman reached out for help, in today’s society, accusations of domestic violence can result in harsh penalties and a major impact on an accused’s life. If you have been charged with domestic abuse, a Grand Rapids MI felony defense lawyer can help make sure your rights are protected in any prosecution.
What Is Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence is defined as a pattern of abusive behavior used to gain and maintain control or power over one intimate partner by the other. This can take the form of physical, emotional, psychological, and sexual abuse.
Criminal charges can be filed if the offender does any of the following to the victim:
- Physically assaults the victim, including slapping, hitting, choking, and pushing
- Sexually assaults the victim
- Threatening the victim’s family members or pets
- Threatening the victim with physical harm
- Any action that tries to rob the victim of their sense of self-worth or their safety
Civil charges can also be filed against the offender. A criminal defense lawyer Grand Rapids, MI provides can help defend against these accusations.
An offender can also use economic abuse as a way to control a victim. The offender takes complete control over the couple’s finances, leaving the victim with no access to money at all. Many times, the offender will prohibit the victim from even getting a job in order to keep control over them by using fear, intimidation, and threats. As a felony defense lawyer Grand Rapids MI can explain, economic abuse is considered a form of domestic violence and the offender can be arrested and prosecuted for the crime.
Domestic violence charges often fall under the Violence Against Women Act, making it a federal crime. A conviction can result in a prison sentence ranging from five years to life, depending on the extent of the injuries the victim suffered. Those convicted are also often ordered to pay restitution to the victim for losses they may have suffered, including temporary housing after the offense was committed, medical bills for treatment of the injuries, physical therapy, and mental health therapy. A felony defense lawyer in Grand Rapids MI can help you pursue for that restitution.
They may also have to pay the victim for any attorney fees, lost income, child care expenses, and any other expenses the victim incurred because of the domestic violence and obtaining the order of protection.
Facing Domestic Violence Charges
The impact domestic violence charges can have on an accused’s life can be severe. They face loss of their job, loss of their home, loss of access to their children, and loss of freedom. Because the penalties and impact of charges are so harsh, there are many cases where false accusations have been made, especially if the couple is going through a contentious divorce or child custody case.
If you have been accused or charged with domestic violence, contact Blanchard Law to speak with a felony defense lawyer Grand Rapids MI clients recommend to find out how we can help.