Expectations Following a Columbia Domestic Violence Accusation

In South Carolina, domestic violence is broken down into different parts with various factors as to what distinguishes domestic violence from an assault and battery. There are three degrees of domestic violence in addition to domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature.

Under the domestic violence statute, it is unlawful for someone to cause, or attempt to cause physical harm or injury to a household member with the present ability under circumstances that create a reasonable fear of imminent peril. A household member is a spouse, a former spouse, a couple with a child in common, and same-sex couples.

Expectations following a Columbia domestic violence accusation can be scary, however, if you have been accused, reach out to a skilled domestic violence lawyer today. A qualified attorney could stand by your side and offer you legal advice throughout the process.

Defining Injury in a Domestic Violence Case

The term injury has different definitions. Each degree depends on a set of factors as to the level of punishment a person receives. A third-degree charge is the lowest and a first-degree offense is next to the highest. The highest level of a domestic violence charge is of a high and aggravated nature.

Domestic Violence is when one partner injures, attempts to injure, or threatens to injure the other person and has the present ability to do so causing the person to have a reasonable fear that they are in imminent danger of being injured. The law defines a great bodily injury and moderate bodily injury based on whether someone is charged with committing a third degree, second degree, first degree, or high and aggravated nature of domestic violence.

Domestic Violence Investigative Process

Law enforcement has a duty under the law to conduct a full investigation to identify the primary aggressor and whether there is probable cause to support the complaining witness’s allegation of domestic abuse. The full investigation involves taking statements and looking for consistencies, inconsistencies, and believability. The police officer always assesses the credibility of the witnesses when deciding about whether there is probable cause to arrest someone by issuing an arrest warrant.

Law enforcement ascertains whether the individual accused of initiating the violence has any prior domestic violence cases against them by reviewing their prior record. An individual’s expectations following a Columbia domestic violence accusation should also include that the police will consider all factors to determine the primary aggressor.

Domestic Violence Arrest Process

When the authorities are alerted of a domestic violence offense, they will arrive at the scene and determine which party is the primary aggressor based on a set of factors.

When one side alleges that there was domestic violence, the police officers take the complaining witness’ statement. The police take pictures if they decide to do a full investigation. They talk to the person who is accused of domestic violence to get their side of the story and take pictures to identify inconsistencies in the statements to determine whether there is probable cause for arrest.

When someone is arrested for domestic violence, they are taken to the police station to be booked and have their fingerprints and mug shot taken. The individual is then required to have a bond hearing within 24 hours of their arrest. When someone is arrested, it is imperative that they contact an accomplished defense attorney as soon as possible.

Benefits of a Columbia Domestic Violence Attorney

When an individual is accused of domestic violence in Columbia, they should look for a domestic violence lawyer with experience defending these types of cases. They need to have a lawyer by their side defending them from day one. Domestic violence often involves he said, she said differences, bad blood, or past experiences. Often, substance abuse or mental illness is involved too.

Having an attorney who is experienced in dealing with the expectations following a Columbia domestic violence accusation is crucial. A dedicated lawyer could work tirelessly to build a viable defense for you.