Domestic Violence Crimes Attorney in New York
Domestic violence cases are rampant everywhere. Every individual who knows what the term is knows that it means a very serious problem among many. If you are being prosecuted for a domestic violence in NYC, you can contact our Domestic Violence Crimes Attorney in New York, who will aid you to build reliable criminal defense for you.
Important Concepts Related To Domestic Violence Cases
Before dwelling in to the case, there are some important cases related to domestic violence that every individual should know more about and they are the following:
Domestic violence is a crime category in New York that is hard to define. There is no crime called "domestic violence" in New York State law but it is a mix of different crimes that affect families.
With that, the following are the important concepts related to domestic violence in New York, to wit:
- Assault - there is assault when the individual receives physical violence such as physical hits, punch,kick, throw things at, or use a weapon against the victim.
- Stalking - stalking is considered as the act of following, monitoring, or tracking of another individual.
- Harassment - there is the crime of harassment that do something that causes alarm or distress and serves no useful purpose.
- Aggravated Harassment - there is aggravated harassment when an individual does something that causes alarm or distress and serves no useful purpose by using electronic means, like a phone or computer.
- Menacing - menacing is the act of threatening another individual to harm with or without a weapon.
- Reckless Endangerment - this is a crime where an individual places another person in a dangerous position that might cause physical injury
- Strangulation/Criminal Obstruction of Breathing or Circulation - this is the act of strangulating or choking, putting a hand on the neck and squeezing even slightly; blocking nose or mouth.
- Disorderly Conduct - there is disorderly conduct whenever another individual disturbs others, like drunken yelling or fighting.
- Criminal Mischief - there is a criminal mischief where the individual remove or take property without permission, even if it is a property that you own together. The best example here is the act of breaking a cell phone or scratching a car.
- Sexual Abuse/Sexual Misconduct/Forcible Touching - there is sexual abuse whenever there is unwanted sexual conduct.
- Intimidation - intimidation includes actions or words that make someone afraid or force them to do something or stop them from doing something.
- Threats - making threats include the act of making someone afraid.
- Identity Theft - there is also identity theft whenever someone’s personal information or credit without their permission.
- Grand Larceny - there is grand larceny when someone gets someone’s property worth more than $1,000.00, without their permission and with no intent to return it.
- Coercion - coercion is the act of trying to prevent someone from doing something that they have the legal right to do.
Now that you know the crimes, you should know how domestic violence becomes a series of crimes. Accordingly, there is domestic violence whenever there is “a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship”. It may include any of the above crimes. The important factor here is the definition of an intimate partner relationship.
Intimate Partner Relationships
An intimate relationship is defined as a relationship that resembles a romantic
relationship, a family relationship, or household members.
In the State of New York, the Social Services Law Section 459-A defines an intimate relationship where there can be domestic violence as anything occurring between the following:
- people legally married or divorced;
- people with a child in common, including adopted children;
- people related by marriage, like in-laws;
- people related by blood, like brothers, parents, cousins;
- unrelated people who live, or have lived together for periods of time;
- unrelated people in, or were in an intimate relationship (current or former), like same-sex couples and teens who are dating.
In a way, it is clear that to determine a relationship as intimate, the relationship could be defined by the following factors:
- the nature or type of relationship;
- how often you see, or saw each other; and
- how long the relationship has gone on.
Start The Process
If you are a victim of domestic violence or is being prosecuted for a crime of domestic violence, you should know that it goes through the following process;
- by the act of the victim going to the police or the district attorney;
- the police can charge the other person with a crime; and
- during any of the court appearances in Criminal Court, the court can issue an Order of Protection.
In domestic violence cases, the New York State imposes in the case of domestic violence a requirement of a mandatory arrest.
The crime requires that whenever there is an intimate partner relationship, the police must make an arrest when any of the following elements concur:
- A felony is committed;
- A person disobeys an order of protection by making contact when there is a stay away order; or
- A person disobeys an order of protection by committing a family offense crime.
In the case of mandatory arrest for domestic violence, even if the individual victim would ask the police not to make an arrest, they must do so.
Limits of Mandatory Arrest
Are there cases when the individuals could not be arrested by the police? There are instances when the arrest is not mandatory, such as:
- There is no order of protection;
- The abuser commits a misdemeanor crime.
The police can make the arrest at any time after the report is made. It is based on the discretion of the police if making an arrest is the right course of action.
The police are required to give the victims a written notice of their legal rights.
After the arrest, the courts would provide a requirement where the abuser will go in front of the judge. It is at that time when the case reaches the court that the government becomes named as the “People of the State of New York”. An arraignment will be set where the judge can do any of the following:
- Set Bail;
- Hold the abuser in jail without bail; or
- Release the abuser.
The part of the arraignment usually takes place within 24 hours of the arrest. It is during this time where the District Attorney (DA) would ask the judge for a Temporary Order of Protection (TOP).
Temporary Order of Protection
The concept of the Temporary Order of Protection (TOP) sets the rules that the abuser must follow while the order is in effect.
What does the order do?
The order protects the complaining victim against the defendant whenever the defendant is suspected of harming, their property and in some cases, their children, pets, or other relatives.
The Limits Set By TOP
The TOP sets the following limits:
- Defendant must stay away from the people and places listed. If the judge included defendant’s home, defendant can’t go back to live or visit. Defendant must stay away even if the defendant owns the home, is named on the lease or is invited to visit. Defendant must stay away from the places listed even when the protected people are not there.
- Defendant can’t speak to the people listed or use another person to send a message. This includes speaking on the phone, leaving voicemail, posting messages on social media, text messages, emails, gifts or notes. Defendant should not respond if the protected person calls or attempts contact.
- Defendant can’t do the crimes listed above.
- Defendant can’t hurt, kill or mistreat the animals listed.
- The person listed can go into the house at the day and time listed, usually with the police, to get personal items, like clothes, toothbrush, medication, backpack or items needed for work.
- The Judge adds other directions to the order here. This is behavior the Judge thinks could harm the people listed.
- Because of an order that already exists, the judge is allowing the people listed to see the children listed. The order will say any limits or conditions.
- Defendant must give up all licensed and unlicensed guns as directed and not get any other guns.
- Defendant must give up hand over the documents listed as directed.
- It may also suspend the defendant’s gun licenses and prevents defendant from getting a gun license while the order is in effect.
Any violation of the TOP can cause the individual to be charged with criminal contempt.
During the case proper, if you have the Order of Protection from both the Family Court and criminal court, your case would move on to the specialized court. The specialized court is the Integrated Domestic Violence (IDV) courtroom. These courtrooms would have better resources for domestic violence cases.
The District Attorney prosecutes the defendant for the crimes. There are so many ways for the prosecution to work out on their criminal prosecution so you would need a defense lawyer who can make sure that they know what they are doing.
Final Order of Protection
In case of conviction, the judge will serve a final Order of Protection. The following are the usual penalties for this crime:
- conditional discharge;
- a fine;
- a probation;
The judge can order the payment or restitution of medical bills and costs. The order lasts for several years.
Presenting Evidence of Domestic Violence
In the case of domestic violence, the prosecutor can officially prove the guilt of the accused with the right evidence.
If you have a need to throw out the prosecution’s evidence, you should hire a lawyer who can help you with making sure that none of your rights have been violated by the law enforcement agents.
Testimony during the prosecution should show that there was violence between the victim and the abuser. Your defense lawyer should show the contradictions and the holes in the testimony of the victim so you can have a fighting chance.
The alleged victim must be able to show the medical records on the effect of the abuse on the individual’s mental health.
The police report must show that the investigating officers are able to protect the rights of the victim as well as the rights of the individual defendant.
Get The Help You Need
At the end of the day, if you are facing prosecution for a case that falls under the problem of domestic violence in the State of New York, it is important that you get all of the help that you need. Federal investigators take a lot of time and effort to make sure that they have a tight case. Being prosecuted for a crime is one thing but being convicted is another. Make sure that you have all of the important facts and the defenses that you could possibly need.
A good defense attorney should be able to help you find the right criminal defense from the time that you hire him. A plea bargaining deal should always be on the table. Technicality should be handled with great caution as that can also take care of your case. You should also be able to throw out evidence if you have the right lawyer.
Whatever you need, whatever kind of defense is necessary, you should get a lawyer who can help you.
Contact Us Today
If you need help urgently, we are always here to assist you. You can visit our office at 464 Ocean parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11218 or call our telephone at: (+1) 347-763-93-96.