Tough, Tenacious Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys
Michigan’s domestic assault law applies to assaults committed against persons who are or were in certain relationships with the defendant. Defendants who have previously been convicted of violent domestic crimes face the possibility of more severe fines and lengthier jail sentences. Michigan law also provides a system where domestic violence victims can obtain personal protection orders from a court.
If you have been accused of domestic violence, you owe it to yourself to contact the West Michigan Defense Team to discuss your rights and legal options. Our attorneys have more than 85 years of combined legal experience, and the firm focuses primarily on criminal defense.
Domestic Violence Is Defined By Interpersonal Relationships
A domestic violence offense differs from other types of assault and battery due to the relationship that exists between the alleged perpetrator and the alleged victim. Under Michigan law, for an offense to be domestic violence, the relationships that must exist (or has previously existed) include:
- Spouse or ex-spouse
- Current or former romantic/dating partner
- People who currently or used to share a household
- People who are parents to the same child or children
As you can see, people do not need to be biologically related or married in order for the offense to be considered domestic violence.
Factors Influencing Charges And Sentencing
Prosecutors have wide discretion in how these cases are charged and the potential penalties associated with a conviction. However, they do generally make decisions based on factors such as:
- Whether this is a first offense or a repeat offense
- Whether the assault involves the use of a weapon
- Whether the perpetrator had the intent to murder
- Whether the victim suffered serious or aggravated injuries
Although far from complete, the list below illustrates the range of penalties someone might face based on repeat convictions and other factors:
- The law: MCL 750.81(2)
- Penalty: 93 days in jail and/or $500.00 fine, or both
- The law: MCL 750.81(3)
- Penalty: One year in Jail and/or $1,000.00 fine, or both
Aggravated domestic assault
- The law: MCL 750.81a(2)
- Penalty: One year in jail and/or $1,000.00 fine, or both
Third offense – felony
- The law: MCL 750.81(4)
- Penalty: Five years in prison and/or $5,000.00 fine, or both
When you contact us to discuss your case, we can assess whether the offense is or will be a misdemeanor or a felony matter, and determine what kinds of consequences you are facing if convicted.
Frequently, there are no independent witnesses to an alleged act of domestic violence, nor is there any tangible proof of any injury. Many times it is a case of “she said, he said,” and false accusations are regularly made to try and gain leverage in a divorce or child custody situation or even as a result of a breakup. We at the West Michigan Defense Team handle these cases with regularity and have been very successful in obtaining positive results for our clients.
Free Consultations Available – Don’t Wait To Seek Legal Help
You can’t afford to wait for things to calm down. The sooner you contact us, the more legal options you may have. To get started with a free initial consultation, call us in Grand Rapids at 616-818-7972. You can also reach us via email.