The state of Tennessee recognizes domestic violence by categorization, identifying each situation by the parties involved. It takes acts of domestic violence seriously and in Rutherford County where the Clarke Law firm is located, these charges or a conviction can be life-changing.
While our typical public understanding of domestic violence could be limited to situations between spouses or romantic couples, domestic violence actually also applies to domestic violence involving various family members or household members. So even if the violence occurs between two roommates, domestic violence could still be applicable.
Not Just Physical Violence
It’s important to remember that domestic violence does not get limited to physical violence. A person who continually harasses or threatens another person or several persons in a household would be committing an act of domestic violence.
In general terms, the state of Tennessee recognizes domestic violence as situations where at least one person has a realistic fear of:
• Verbal Abuse
• Physical Contact
• Physical Harm, especially bodily injury
• Harassment and/or Physical Intimidation
Level of Seriousness
First of all, if you or any loved ones have been experiencing domestic violence such as harassment, threats of physical harm, verbal abuse, physical contact, or physical harm, especially with the injury to your body, contact the police immediately. No one should be forced to live in constant fear, especially within their own home.
That being said, the consequences of domestic violence in the state of Tennessee can vary depending on the overall situation. For example, a charge of domestic assault where one person has been verbally abusing the other could be classified as a misdemeanor. However, if the person initiating the domestic violence in tandem with a more serious crime, such as sexual assault, the criminal charge can increase to a felony.
Domestic assault and violence do not get limited to those two examples, either. The charge can be leveled against the accused in situations ranging from violating a restraining order, stalking, sex trafficking, and even murder.
The numerous ways domestic violence can be described make having a good defense if accused so important. A skilled lawyer can sort through what the victim is saying, what the police are saying, and your side of the story. If you have been accused or arrested on domestic violence charges, you need to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney, like David Clarke of the Clarke Law Firm, immediately. Mr. Clarke is a leading Murfreesboro domestic violence defense lawyer with trial experience. He knows a strategic defense needs to be put into place or you could be risking your rights.
Steps To Take
If you have been arrested and charged with domestic assault and/or violence, consider these steps:
1. Take Photos of Any Injuries
If you suffered any physical harm, take pictures of the injuries. Law enforcement officers should also take photographs to record the details of the situation, but it’s always smart to have your own records for proof. The victim may have caused you bodily injury such as scratches or bruises if there was a physical fight and any photos documenting your injuries could help in your defense.
2. Obey Any Court Orders
Any court hearings regarding domestic violence charges will likely not go to trial right after the arrest, which means the court may invoke a “no contact” rule forbidding the two parties from interacting with one another before trial. Do not violate that rule. Instead, maintain the court-ordered distance, do not call or text or respond to calls or texts from the victim and avoid any social media interaction. You should use the time to work with your attorney to prepare your defense.
3. Seek Competent Legal Representation
Though you can represent yourself, when it comes to a serious charge like domestic violence, it’s better to have a criminal defense lawyer in your corner. David Clarke knows your rights and knows the Rutherford County criminal court system. He is prepared to help defend his clients vigorously. Often police are given an inaccurate or exaggerated report of an argument (particularly in divorce cases) and they will always side with the alleged victim, just in case. The District Attorney’s office can still choose to prosecute the case, even if the accuser decides to drop the accusation. It’s important to have an attorney when dealing with a potential life-altering conviction.
We Can Help
Need to learn more about defense in domestic violence cases in the Murfreesboro area? do not hesitate to reach out to David Clarke for competent and professional legal representation. Contact the Clarke Law Firm today.