Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer in Phoenix, AZ

domestic violence defense lawyer

Dropping domestic charges isn’t easy in Arizona. Oftentimes, the only way to drop a false domestic violence conviction is if the victim signs a drop charge affidavit in either a criminal or civil proceeding. In some cases, the district attorney may continue to pursue the charges against you. Due to the severity of domestic violence crimes, you’ll need an experienced domestic violence defense lawyer, especially if you’re facing a false accusation. 

At Ybarra Maldonado Law Group, we defend against all types of domestic violence charges in Arizona, including:

  • Criminal Abandonment
  • Criminal Neglect
  • Harassment
  • Stalking, Aggravated Stalking, and Cyber Stalking
  • Violation of Protection Order

When you’re accused of certain crimes, such as spousal or child abuse, you may be presumed guilty even when you’re innocent. If you’re convicted for a first offense, you may be facing years behind bars and thousands of dollars in fines.

For a free initial consultation, contact an experienced Phoenix criminal defense lawyer at 602-910-4040.

What are Domestic Violence Charges in Arizona?

There is no single, distinct crime or offense that describes domestic violence in Arizona. Instead, under Arizona law (ARS 13-3601) certain crimes committed against any person with a close relationship to the defendant are considered domestic violence offenses. “Close relationships” don’t only include people in a romantic or sexual relationship. Domestic violence could be caused by family members such as parents, siblings, a former spouse, a brother-in-law, a sister-in-law, a parent-in-law, etc.

It can also be what is called a sentence enhancer. A domestic violence enhancer can make the penalties for other crimes even worse than they already would have been.

How Long Will Domestic Violence Charges Stay on Your Record?

A first domestic violence offense, even if it’s a misdemeanor, will appear on your criminal record forever. This record will be accessible to employers, agencies, and institutions and can affect your rights as well. A convict may even face a restraining order from alleged domestic violence victims.

How Common Are False Domestic Violence Accusations?

False police reports are more common than you might think, especially when it comes to domestic violence accusations. On average, there are approximately 700,000 false charges of domestic violence in the United States every year. These false allegations most frequently occur in divorce proceedings, with 25% of all divorces involving domestic violence accusations. 

What Happens When Someone Files a False Police Report About Domestic Violence in Phoenix, AZ?

In any other situation, filing a false police report for a crime that didn’t actually occur would result in criminal charges. This is not the case when it comes to domestic abuse reports. This is because the courts want real victims to feel comfortable enough coming forward about their violent abuse instead of providing them with another reason to stay silent. This is done in good faith for the alleged victim, but unfortunately, some people take advantage of this good faith.

If you were falsely accused of domestic violence, you need to hire a Phoenix domestic violence attorney as soon as possible. Many people assume that if they didn’t actually commit the crime, the truth will come out and justice will inevitably work in their favor. This is rarely the case. People are convicted under false accusations all the time, especially when it comes to domestic abuse claims. 

If someone filed a false domestic violence police report against you, you need to fight it head-on. You need someone on your side that is going to do everything it takes to prove your innocence and protect your character and reputation. That is why it is crucial for those who have been falsely accused of abuse to hire a Phoenix domestic violence lawyer at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group.

What are Common Types of Domestic Violence Crimes?

A domestic violence crime isn’t always violent or aggressive behavior. Many domestic violence cases include emotional abuse, sexual assault, physical injury, physical assault with a deadly weapon, financial control, elder abuse, child abuse, general neglect, kidnapping, and so much more.

What is Aggravated Domestic Violence in Arizona?

According to Arizona’s criminal law (ARS 13-3601.02), someone who commits more than three offenses of physical abuse towards a victim within a period of 7 years will earn an aggravated domestic violence conviction.

Is Domestic Violence a Felony in Arizona?

Domestic violence can either be a misdemeanor crime or a felony depending on the specifics of each case. Generally, a first or second offense of domestic violence will result in one of the three misdemeanor charges in Arizona. Three or more offenses will likely lead to a domestic violence felony conviction in Arizona. But the more severe the victim’s injuries are, the more severe the charge will be. The following instances may result in a felony domestic violence conviction, even if it’s only the first or second offense.

  • Sexual assault of a child or an adult
  • The victim sustained serious physical injuries
  • The suspect has other unrelated convictions on their record

Naturally, the consequences that come with misdemeanor charges are less severe than those that come with felony charges. If you’re convicted of a domestic violence felony, you’re looking at spending several years behind bars and paying thousands of dollars in fines.

Domestic Violence Related Disorderly Conduct in Arizona

Disorderly conduct can also be referred to as “disturbing the peace.” Arizona’s Revised Statutes defines an offense like disorderly conduct if it was committed with the intent (or at least knowledge) of disturbing the peace of a neighborhood, family, or person. The following are offenses that may be classified as disorderly conduct:

  • Fighting, violence, or seriously disruptive behavior
  • Unreasonable noise
  • Abusive or offensive language or gestures towards another person that is likely to provoke or encourage physical retaliation
  • Causing prolonged commotion with the intent to prevent the business of a lawful meeting, gathering, or procession
  • Refusal to obey a lawful order to disperse, generally issued when in close proximity to a hazard or emergency, in order to maintain public safety 
  • Reckless handling, displaying, or discharging of a weapon or dangerous instrument 

In order to receive a charge of domestic violence related to disorderly conduct, the offense must have occurred between two (or more) people sharing a close relationship. If any of the following situations occur in a disorderly conduct offense, a domestic violence charge may also be applied.

Involved parties are:

  • Married
  • Formerly married
  • Live or once lived in the same household
  • Parents to the same child

Alleged victim is:

  • Pregnant with the accused’s child
  • Related (by blood or law) to the accused
  • A child living in the same residence as the accused
  • Currently or was previously involved in a sexual or romantic relationship with the accused 

Along with the penalties that already accompany disorderly conduct, you may also face additional penalties if charged with domestic violence-related disorderly conduct in Arizona.

How Does a Court Prove Domestic Violence Charges?

In domestic violence cases, the prosecutor must prove only two things: (1) the defendant has a domestic relationship with the victim, and (2) the defendant committed a crime that is specifically listed under Arizona’s Domestic Violence Statute. Phoenix violent crime lawyers at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group can help suspects build a solid defense against these elements of proof.

Possible Defenses for a Domestic Violence Conviction

If you’re accused of domestic violence, whether you’re actually innocent of the crime or not, you need an experienced domestic violence lawyer to help you formulate a strong defense. The following defenses can possibly create a positive outcome for the accused in a domestic violence case.

  • Creating reasonable doubt surrounding the victim’s claims or disproving the claims altogether.
  • Claiming mutual combat.
  • Focusing on the lack of injuries suffered from the alleged abuse or proving that the victim’s injuries don’t line up with their story. For example, if a victim claims they were punched in the face but the facial injuries or bruises don’t look like they came from a punch, then a criminal defense lawyer can use this to create more reasonable doubt in the victim’s story.
  • Focusing on the victim’s lack of evidence or witness statements.
  • Claiming self-defense as the reasoning for causing the victim physical harm.
  • Claiming property defense as the reasoning for causing the victim harm.

Call a Phoenix Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group Today

Receiving a domestic violence charge can stick with you for a lifetime. It often leaves a huge negative impact on nearly every aspect of your life and your future. A domestic violence lawyer at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group will analyze all angles of your case in search of a defense. If they are not able to create a complete defense strategy, they will work to have the charge reduced or help you reach a plea agreement that most benefits you. 

If you are charged with domestic violence, either on its own or along with disorderly conduct, you need the help of an experienced domestic violence defense lawyer. At Ybarra Maldonado Law Group, we offer services you can count on and representation you can trust. To get in touch with our office today, call 602-910-4040 or fill out the form here.

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