If you are facing charges of domestic violence, it is important to understand that this is a serious issue that can have severe consequences for both you and the accuser. Domestic violence can take many forms, including physical, emotional, sexual abuse. Domestic violence cases often occur in high stakes and sensitive personal situations such as separations, divorces and child custody disputes. They can involve members of extended family, seniors, spouses, and children. The impact of domestic violence can be devastating for the accuser, including physical injury, mental health problems, and even death. As a result, the Calgary Police Service and Alberta Crown Prosecutor’s take a “special approach” to domestic violence charges.
When facing domestic violence charges, it is essential to seek help as soon as possible. There are many resources available in Calgary and throughout Alberta to assist individuals facing domestic violence charges, including legal representation. I am a domestic violence lawyer with extensive experience in this area, and can help you navigate the legal system and achieve the best possible outcome in your case. Remember, it is never too late to seek help and support in addressing and addressing domestic violence charges.
What is domestic violence?
Domestic violence is any form of abuse between individuals who have or have had an intimate relationship, such as a romantic partner, family member, or roommate. It can include:
- Physical violence: This includes any physical harm or injury inflicted on another person, such as hitting, punching, kicking, or using weapons.
- Emotional abuse: This includes any behaviour that is intended to control, harass, threaten, and intimidate another person.
- Sexual violence: This includes any sexual activity that is non-consensual, coercive or otherwise unlawful such as sexual assault and incest.
Domestic violence offences are some of the most commonly prosecuted offences in the criminal justice system. Some of the related offences include: assault, unlawful confinement, uttering threats, and criminal harassment.
It is important to recognize that domestic violence can happen to anyone, regardless of gender, age, or background. It is a serious issue that can have severe consequences for the person experiencing it, including physical harm, mental health issues, and in some cases, even death. However, it is also important to recognize that everyone who is accused of domestic violence is presumed innocent. There may be instances where a person is falsely accused or where the situation was simply misunderstood. It is important for the justice system to carefully consider all the facts and evidence in any domestic violence case to ensure that the truth is accurately determined and that innocent parties are not unfairly punished.
What are the penalties for domestic violence in Calgary?
In Calgary, the penalties for domestic violence depend on the offence’s severity and the perpetrator’s criminal history.
For first-time people charged with violent crimes, the penalty may be a fine, probation, or a prison sentence of up to 5 years. If the offence is considered more serious, such as causing serious bodily harm or using a weapon, the penalty may be up to 10 years in prison.
Repeat offenders may face harsher penalties, including a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 45 days for a second offence and 120 days for a third or subsequent offence.
What should you do if you are charged with domestic violence?
If you are facing domestic violence charges in Calgary, it is important to take immediate steps to defend yourself and seek legal assistance.
The following are some steps you should consider taking:
Seek legal representation: It is important to consult with a lawyer as soon as possible if you are facing domestic violence charges. I can provide guidance on your options and assist you in building a strong defence.
Understand the charges and potential consequences: It is important to understand the specific charges you are facing and the potential consequences of a conviction. Depending on the severity of the offence and your criminal history, you may face fines, probation, or a prison sentence.
Attend court hearings: If you are facing domestic violence charges, it is important to attend all court hearings and follow the orders of the court. Failing to do so can result in additional charges and potential consequences.
Seek help for yourself: It is important to recognize that domestic violence is a serious issue and that individuals who are involved in it often need help and support. There are organizations in Calgary that can provide counselling for those who have been charged with domestic violence.
Gather evidence: If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence, it is important to gather any evidence that may support your defence, such as text messages, emails, or witness statements.
How a Calgary Domestic Violence Lawyer can help you
As a Calgary domestic violence lawyer, I have extensive experience in negotiating with both the Crown and police in domestic cases. I have obtained strong results in the context of bail, obtaining peace bonds, obtaining non-custodial sentences following a guilty plea, and at trial.
I can help you in several ways, including:
Providing guidance on your options: I can explain the charges you are facing and the potential consequences of a conviction. I can also provide guidance on the best course of action to take, such as negotiating a plea bargain or fighting the charges in court.
Assisting with the defence: A lawyer can help you gather evidence and prepare a strong defence for court. I can also represent you in court and advocate on your behalf.
Negotiating a plea bargain: Depending on the strength of the evidence, I may be able to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor. This may involve pleading guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a reduced sentence.
Advocating for your rights: I can ensure that your rights are protected throughout the legal process and can fight for a fair outcome.
Overall, if you are facing domestic violence charges in Calgary, it is important to seek legal representation as soon as possible. I can provide guidance and support and help you navigate the legal system with his years of experience. Contact me today for a free consultation, available 24/7.