You may be wondering what types of penalties you may face if you are charged with domestic violence in Fontana, CA. A determining factor is how domestic violence is classified. Based on the circumstances of your case, you could face a misdemeanor or felony charge. Because there is not a clear line as to which way the charges may be filed, these charges are commonly referred to as “wobblers” because it falls into a gray area that is dependent on how the prosecutor wishes to file the charges. There is an enormous difference between how these charges are penalized, making it ever more imperative to know how your charges are filed.
If this is your first charge and it is filed as a misdemeanor, your penalties could include:
- Up to one year in a county jail
- Up to $2,000 in fines
- Mandatory completion of a batterer intervention program
- Community service
In the case of your first offense, a judge may use their discretion to assign you probation instead of jail time. In lieu of, or in addition to, fines, you may also be ordered to pay for mental health treatment a victim may participate in, or you may be required to donate to a charity that focuses on helping victims of domestic violence.
If charges are filed as a felony charge, potential penalties could include:
- Up to one year in county jail or up to four years in state prison
- Fines of up to $6,000
If either charge is granted probation, the terms of your probation could include:
- Counseling for anger management and domestic violence
- Mandatory completion of community service
- Payments of restitution
- Court costs
- Submitting to randomized drug tests
- And more
In addition to the legal penalties you could face, a conviction will also mean a criminal record that could follow you on job applications, housing applications, or when you apply for further educational opportunities. Even though you may serve time for your criminal conviction, unfortunately, a criminal record can continue to punish you for years after your sentence is over. With domestic violence, this could mean hurting future relationships and potentially alienating current relationships.
With an accusation of domestic violence, you may also be served a protective order which requires that you maintain a specific physical distance from the accuser or those affiliated with them and that you cease all communication with them. Although some circumstances may be granted in which contact may be made, even from the prompting of the accuser, a judge may use their discretion to enforce a no-contact order between the accused and the accuser. Under the terms of a protective order, you may be required to:
- Forgo any gun possession or ownership
- Maintain all current insurance policies without making any changes
- Return to the victim any property to which they are entitled
- Pay court-ordered child or spousal support payments
- Moving out from a home you share with the accuser
- Forgo any contact with pets that are shared with the accuser
- Ensure no contact is made at any residence, school, business, or other location in which the accuser is associated
- Forgo any contact with the accuser
Fontana Criminal Defense Attorney
Defending domestic violence can be difficult because charges are often filed as battery or abuse of a spouse, amongst other similar types of charges. My SoCal Lawyers know that the circumstances of your case will help to determine a defense that may work for your case. Our attorneys tailor the defense to what your case needs.
Common defense strategies that we use include showing a lack of intent, establishing self-defense, arguing the accusations are false, and showing the lack of evidence. No matter what circumstances you are facing, you deserve a team that puts your needs first. Our team understands the costs you face for a conviction, so we fight for your freedom and your reputation. Call our offices today and work with the team that has experience with the defense you deserve.