A Look at a Controversial Offense
Domestic violence is a politically charged category of offenses. State laws vary greatly in their treatment and definitions of domestic violence offenses, which means there is relatively little consensus on what constitutes domestic violence and how domestic violence offenders should be punished. Where there is little consensus, there is room for political influence. And this controversy begs the question of how are domestic violence offenders affected by politics.
Domestic Violence in California
In California, in particular, a long history of high-profile domestic violence cases keeps the debate on how to punish domestic violence offenders alive. And, because a number of those high-profile cases in the past involved celebrities or well-known individuals, there is an even stronger debate regarding the prosecution and sentencing of domestic violence offenders. Indeed, some very well known Californians have gotten away with little more than a slap on the wrist for domestic violence. Still, others have suffered life-changing consequences for acts of self-defense. The impact of domestic violence on citizenship adds another layer of complexity in California, as both offenders and victims fear deportation if the authorities find out. As the debate on the rights of non-citizens ramps up so does the conversation about what offenses can trigger deportation and why.
Domestic Violence in the Spotlight
For all these reasons, domestic violence is a policy hot topic, and it's clear how domestic violence offenders are affected by politics. But while the current political climate may shine a light on domestic violence offenses, it's still the statutory law on domestic violence that continues to have the biggest impact on the lives of domestic violence offenders. California has a number of standard penalties for domestic violence offenders who are convicted, including fines, a restraining order, victim restitution, and potentially incarceration. Those convicted will also lose their gun rights and face immigration consequences under federal law. The elements that determine sentencing include the facts and circumstances of the offense, the defendant's prior criminal history, the defendant's role and history in the community, the nature and extent of the victim's injuries, among others. Because there are so many factors involved in domestic violence cases, each case is unique. Perhaps this is why the media portrays some domestic violence offenders as people who got off lucky or people who were unfairly discriminated against. In reality, there are many factors in each case that can influence the outcome.
Speak With a Domestic Violence Defense Attorney
If you are facing domestic violence charges in California, it's essential you work with an experienced domestic violence defense attorney. A seasoned attorney can evaluate your case, identify the weaknesses in the prosecution's argument, and leverage any and all facts that fall in your favor. Domestic violence defense takes creative problem solving and a deep insight into how these cases are prosecuted and tried in California counties, and an experienced attorney will have both. Political views on domestic violence will continue change. But you can be assured domestic violence will always be taken seriously and be heavily stigmatized. Thus, you should always fight domestic violence charges.
Have you been arrested and are facing domestic violence charges? Visalia area DV defense attorney Christopher Martens can help you get the outcome you deserve. With over ten years of criminal defense experience, Mr. Martens has handled thousands of cases and has taken over 50 to trial. Attorney Christopher Martens has the skills and knowledge needed to defend your rights. Serving the Visalia and Fresno areas, The Law Offices of Christopher Martens can provide expert criminal defense counsel. Call our office at 559-967-7386 or email us at [email protected] for a free consultation.