Columbia Domestic Violence Penalties

There can be many long-term collateral consequences of a domestic violence charge in South Carolina. Dealing with Columbia domestic violence penalties may be stressful and contacting a skilled domestic violence attorney could be a way to manage these issues that may arise. Get in contact with a domestic violence attorney that could help you understand the charges that you face, and strengthen your case.

Difference Between Domestic Violence and Assault

The charge of assault is considerably different from that of a domestic violence charge. Domestic violence charges could lead to more intensive penalties such as fines and up to 90 days in prison. Assualt and battery offenses may only be up to 30 days in jail with a lesser fine that could be around $500.

In terms of owning a firearm, if someone is convicted of assault and battery, they may not be automatically banned from owning a firearm if it is a misdemeanor conviction. Columbia domestic violence penalties could differ by banning an individual from owning a firearm, such as a pistol or any other type.

Long-Term Consequences of Domestic Violence

A domestic violence conviction being on someone’s criminal record could hurt their future jobs prospects as well as their eligibility for the following:

  • Government assistance
  • Scholarships
  • Housing

With both assault and battery and domestic violence, if they are ultimately the felony-level convictions of a high and aggravated nature, the person may be unable to own a firearm regardless of which charge was given.

Common Penalties

There are several Columbia domestic violence penalties associated with the four levels of domestic violence. There may be (in order of severity) third degree, second degree, and first-degree domestic violence charges, as well as a high and aggravated nature charge. For a third-degree domestic violence charge, a person may face a maximum penalty of up to 90 days in prison and up to a $2,500 fine, or both.

For a second-degree charge, the maximum penalty could be up to three years prison and a $5,000 fine. The first-degree charge could have a maximum sentence of 10 years and may be considered a felony. In the highest level of domestic violence cases, the high and aggravated nature charges, the person may face a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

Advanced Charges

Enhancements in domestic violence cases may occur when certain facts of the case move the severity of the penalty from a lower charge to a higher charge, increasing the potential penalties. Examples include having a minor perceive the incident or cutting off the plaintiff’s airflow. Other examples that could enhance the potential penalties faced by the defendant include having a similar conviction in the past decade or using a firearm in the alleged domestic violence incident.

Civil Protection Orders in Columbia Domestic Violence Cases

A civil protection order may not directly affect anything on the criminal side of the case other than the fact that the defendant is prohibited from having any contact at all, even through a third party, with the plaintiff. It could affect the case greatly if the defendant does not follow the protection order.

When a defendant violates that protection order, they could be brought before a judge on that violation and could receive a separate criminal offense for it. A skilled domestic violence attorney could attempt to mitigate the Columbia domestic violence penalties that a person may face.