Domestic violence is an undeniable problem in our country. As a society, we are far too prone to act with aggression when something bothers us. And often, this aggression is turned against the people closest to us.
What is also undeniable, though, is that domestic violence is an incredibly complicated topic when it comes to handling it through the law. Often, situations involve a huge amount of “he said-she said.” Or police are called in by a neighbor or someone else who has no idea what is happening.
In some situations, domestic violence allegations are used as leverage in issues like divorces or child custody disputes. And no one likes to talk about it, but it is just as possible for victims to be charged as the actual aggressor in some situations.
Then there is the question of what “violence” means under the law. Based on the legal definition, someone could be charged for something as minor as throwing flowers across the room if officers are called in due to our mandatory arrest requirement.
Whatever your situation, if you are accused of domestic violence in Colorado, it is vital that you get in touch with an experienced criminal attorney as soon as possible. Jacob Martinez has successfully handled numerous domestic violence cases in the Denver area and throughout the state. He understands what it takes to beat your charges and protect your reputation and rights. He knows that there are two sides to every story, and he will make it his goal to tell your story and present you in the best light.
What It Means to Be Charged with Domestic Violence in Colorado
If you were to put together a list of the most demonized criminal charges, domestic violence would have to be near the top. Few things cause people to look down on you more than imply that you acted violently toward your loved ones. You may find that friends and coworkers look at you differently. Neighbors avoid you. Life is just a little bit harder.
Imagine dealing with this on top of the criminal penalties you might be hit with if convicted. In Colorado, a domestic violence conviction can mean time in prison, high fines, and more. You may have to go to counseling or anger management classes. You can lose your right to bear arms. You might be prevented from contacting your family – even your children. You could even be forced to leave your home and find somewhere else to live.
Just as impactful is the fact that you will be forever branded as a domestic violence offender; it is a stigma that can make it much harder to get a good job, find a place to live, secure a loan, and more. Those who work in any profession that requires firearms or explosives (including those in construction, military personnel, mining professionals, and police officers), will also immediately lose their jobs.
When you are up against something like this, you owe it to yourself to fight back with a smart, aggressive defense designed to poke holes in the prosecution’s arguments and minimize any damage done to you. To work hard to get your charges reduced, dropped, or dismissed, and if you end up going to trial, to avoid a guilty verdict.
Common Denver Domestic Violence Charges the Law Office of Jacob E. Martinez Can Help You Beat
Domestic violence is not like other crimes. It both means something very specific while at the same time quite general. According to the legal definition of our state, domestic violence is “an act or threatened act of violence upon a person with whom the actor is or has been involved in an intimate relationship.”
So it is specific in the fact that something can only count as domestic violence if it occurs between two people who are or have been intimate, which by law in Colorado includes relationships between:
- Current or former spouses
- Current or former couples
- Parents of the same child
Those are the only qualifying relationships. Other states include people like roommates on this list, but our laws do not.
However, while the relationships that qualify an action as domestic violence are narrow, the actions themselves are quite broad. They encompass physical and non-physical behaviors – some of which you may not even realize.
Actions that can count as domestic violence include:
Assault. If you engage in harmful or painful physical contact with someone, you may be charged with assault.
Criminal mischief. Here is one most people, probably do not think about when they hear the term “domestic violence.” Criminal mischief involves damaging another’s property, but when that property belongs to someone in one of the groups we listed above, it counts as domestic violence under the law.
Rape or sexual assault. There is a wide range of offenses within this category and many nuances to the law. Still, the general definition involves coercing or forcing another person to engage in a sexual act.
Harassment. This one gets charged a lot. It involves several different criminal acts, including communicating in an insulting or offensive manner, following, or continually calling or contacting someone.
Stalking. This offense sounds a lot like harassment (following, repeatedly contacting, or surveilling), but there are differences under the law. Consult with a knowledgeable lawyer to ensure you understand the charge’s specifics.
Trespassing. It is illegal to enter or remain on a property without permission. If you do this at the property of someone you have had an intimate relationship with, it is also a form of domestic violence.
Telephone obstruction. You cannot prevent someone from communicating via phone or any other communication device.
Threats. This one is always complicated to deal with. Under the law, using gestures, messages, or words that might be interpreted as threatening against someone else is illegal.
Again, the only thing needed to take any of these charges from a general criminal offense to an act of domestic violence is the existence (at any time) of one of the relationships we identified above between the alleged perpetrator and victim.
It is an interesting definition of “violence” since, in some cases, an alleged perpetrator does not have to come near an alleged victim to meet the definition. Worse, the odds are stacked against the accused. Law enforcement officials here are taught to believe the victim is pretty much any domestic violence situation – even when little proof exists.
Start Building Your Defense Today by Contacting Experienced Denver Domestic Violence Attorney Jacob Martinez
The bottom line? To successfully fight back against your domestic violence charges and avoid life-altering consequences, you need someone on your side with a proven track record.
Jacob Martinez has been so successful at getting positive results for his clients that he has received all kinds of recognition, including Clients’ Choice awards and being named to several “Best Of” and “Top Attorney” lists.
Want to learn what he can do for you? Reach out to the Attorneys at the Law Office of Jacob E. Martinez by calling 720.246.6700.