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Updated: Apr 30, 2024 @ 4:29 am

Family Violence Offenses: Criminal Penalties

If police have to respond to a domestic violence call, chances are somebody’s going to jail. After the fact, you’ll find that prosecutors aren’t shy about pursuing a conviction and painting the accused party as a menace to society. If you’re found guilty of the offense, they’re not shy about asking for extremely harsh sentences from the court.

If you have a domestic violence charge and you’re looking for options to protect yourself, the first step in developing a strategic response is to hire a criminal defense lawyer.

Galveston criminal defense lawyer Tad Nelson has helped people in all sorts of predicaments to keep their future. Quite often, we’re able to help get these cases resolved favorably. Talk with a defense lawyer today by calling us at 409-765-5614.

Domestic Violence & Texas Law

Texas Family Code Section 71.004 outlines the specifics of what constitutes domestic violence. It broadly covers acts that inflict physical harm, bodily injury, assault, sexual assault, or threats that place the victim in reasonable fear of imminent physical harm.

A “family member” (as defined by law) could be a family member, a household member, a person you’re in a dating relationship with or even an ex.

The Penalty Spectrum

From Misdemeanors to Felonies

The consequences following a conviction for domestic violence vary.

The specifics of the case, including the nature of the offense and any previous convictions, dictate how the charge is classified. The classifications of criminal charges range from misdemeanors to felonies. The higher the severity of the criminal classification means the more serious the post-conviction potential penalties.

Class C Misdemeanor

A Class C Misdemeanor, as outlined in Texas Penal Code Section 12.23, is usually applied to verbal threats of violence. Although seemingly minor, it still carries a potential fine of up to $500.

Class A & B Misdemeanors

These cases involve direct physical violence. A conviction for Class B Misdemeanor family assault could mean a jail sentence of up to 180 days and a fine of up to $2,000.

In contrast, a Class A Misdemeanor carries a jail sentence of up to one year and a maximum fine of $4,000.

Felony Charges

If the offense is especially severe or if the accused has prior domestic violence convictions, the District Attorney will classify your case as a felony.

Felony criminal classifications range from a third-degree felony, which could lead to a prison term of 2 to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000, to a first-degree felony for continuous violence against the family, which carries a prison term of 5 to 99 years and a potential fine of up to $10,000.

Non-Judicial Consequences

In addition to judicial penalties, a domestic violence conviction in Texas carries with it several consequential effects.

These can include difficulty finding employment due to the conviction record, loss of child custody rights, and complications for people with immigration status concerns.

In certain cases, under Texas Penal Code Section 46.04, you could lose your right to own or possess firearms.

Need Help With A Domestic Violence Case?

Talk With the Experts at Tad Nelson & Associates

Remember, an accusation is just that. With a strong defense, a deep understanding of your rights, and lawyers who’ll relentlessly advocate for you, you can face the challenges ahead with confidence.

If you have concerns about criminal charges for assaulting a family member, our law firm can help you. Contact Tad Nelson & Associates today by calling us at 409-765-5614.

Tad Nelson, Board Certified Galveston Criminal Defense Lawyer

Talk with an experienced lawyer. Schedule your free consultation today.

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