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Published On: Wed, Aug 26th, 2020

What Happens When You’re Charged with Domestic Violence in Arizona?

In the State of Arizona, one or more children witness domestic violence every hour. The CDC estimates that almost 40% of Arizonians have been subject to the crime. 

photo/ Vartza

Domestic abuse is alleged more often than people realize. However, not all cases are valid, and many involve false accusations. Others start as normal disagreements before the police are called. When the accuser tries to revoke their allegation, the state is granted jurisdiction over the case. 

As someone who was wrongfully accused, this can be a headache to deal with. Let’s make things easier by understanding Arizona’s domestic violence laws and what happens when you’re charged. 

Defining Domestic Abuse

The state in question has a fairly broad definition of what classifies as domestic violence. Abuse doesn’t necessarily have to be physical for it to be considered a crime. It can be emotional or sexual, for instance. Endangerment and economic control can also count, as well as the following examples:

  • Assault and battery
  • Criminal trespassing
  • Harassment and intimidation
  • Kidnapping
  • Disorderly conduct

Defendants can be charged with additional crimes during a case. Before that happens, the victim must be a specific party for it to meet the definition of domestic violence. 

Grounds for Accusation

The plaintiff and defendant have to be related in one of these ways:

  • Romantic relationship (including divorced)
  • Living in the same home
  • Having a child in common
  • By blood, court order or marriage

Another valid situation is when the victim is a child who stayed under the same roof as the accused and is blood-related to a former partner or roommate of the defendant. 

Domestic Violence Penalties

Arizona state law determines domestic violence sentences based on the crime it involves – not the crime itself. This means that the penalties will match those that are relevant to the base crime. What’s important here is that domestic violence can be added on top of other charges, which results in a more severe penalty. 

In most cases, domestic violence is charged as a misdemeanor. The maximum sentence for a Class 3 (misdemeanor) is 30 days in jail or $500 in fines. Moving to Class 2 brings the limits to 120 days and $750 in fines. For a Class 1 domestic violence charge, defendants can face 180 days in jail or $2,500 in fines. 

Being convicted of domestic violence three or more times within seven years is considered a Class 5 felony, which is punishable by up to two and a half years in prison. Serious bodily injury to the victim can lead to a 5 to 15-year sentence.

Next Steps

Of course, your best bet is to be safe and work with a Phoenix domestic violence defense attorney who can ensure that the case is resolved without fuss. They can also help you dismiss an order of protection, which is also known as a restraining order or injunction. Penalties for violating an order of protection (something you can do unintentionally) are similar to a Class 1 charge. 

Remember to do your research and carefully consider your options moving forward. The right legal expertise will naturally be of the most assistance. 

Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Domestic Violence

Best Platforms to Spread Awareness for Domestic Violence

Guide About Domestic Violence and Child Abuse

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About the Author

- Veselina Dzhingarova has long experience in internet marketing and SEO. She is passionate about blogging to share her expertise. Veselina is a regular contributor at many other online publishers like chamberofcommerce.com, marketoracle.co.uk, newswire.net, bizcommunity.com, socialnomics.net and more. She is the co-founder of Financia­ltipsor.co­m, cryptoe­xt.com, Bl­ogforweb.c­om, Techsu­rprise.com­, travelti­psor.com a­nd others.­ You can get in touch with her on LinkedIn , Google+ or at [email protected]

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