Domestic violence charges in Arizona can be very serious. They can also be very confusing. That’s because domestic violence is not a criminal charge itself. It is a tag that gets added to some underlying charge such as assault, disorderly conduct, or criminal damage. The domestic violence, or DV, tag gets added when you have a domestic relationship with the victim in the underlying charge. The domestic relationship could be brother/sister, boyfriend/girlfriend, parent/child, roommate, or more. It is that relationship that makes it domestic violence, even when no acts of violence occurred.
Domestic Violence Resources:
The DV tag increases the mandatory minimum sentence at court and can have long-lasting effects outside of court. A first time conviction for a DV offense carries a minimum of 26-sessions of domestic violence counseling. These counseling classes are 90 minutes and you can typically only complete one a week. That means six months of classes for a first time conviction.
A DV conviction can also take away your right to bear arms. If you work in a job that requires you to carry a firearm, a DV conviction could cause you to be fired. Additionally, many employers who do not require you bear arms will not hire people with DV convictions. Many apartment complexes will not rent to people who have DV convictions.
Finally, a DV conviction can also impact a divorce or child custody case. A judge may revoke or limit visitation with a child based on a DV allegation or conviction.
Due to the serious consequences of even a misdemeanor DV conviction, it is important you take the charge seriously.
If you have been charged with a domestic violence offense in Pima County, contact us today for a free consultation.