Domestic violence is a serious problem across the nation – and right here in Indiana. So, the state tends to be aggressive as it pursues criminal domestic violence charges after an allegation of abuse.
It’s essential to appreciate just how much is at stake if you or a loved one are convicted on domestic violence charges in Indianapolis. The consequences of a domestic violence conviction can have ripple effects across your life – now and for years to come.
Domestic Violence Charges in Indiana: Crimes and Penalties
Section 35-42-2-1.3 of the Indiana Code explains that a person commits domestic violence (or domestic battery) when they:
- Touch a family or household member in a rude or angry manner, or
- Place bodily fluid or waste on a family or household member in a rude or angry manner
Depending on the circumstances surrounding this criminal offense, it can be classified as anything from a Class A Misdemeanor to a Level 2 Felony.
When convicted on domestic violence charges in Indiana, there are two distinct types of consequences.
- Criminal (penal) penalties, and
- Collateral consequences
Each of these groups of consequences can have a severe impact on a convict’s life, finances, and prospects for the future.
Criminal Penalties for Domestic Violence Convictions
When a criminal case in the state of Indiana ends in a domestic violence conviction, the defendant almost always has to spend some time in jail or prison and pay a hefty fine.
The specific nature of a convict’s punishment depends on the severity of their offense:
- Level 2 Felonies: Between ten and 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 3 Felonies: Between three and 16 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 4 Felonies: Between two and 12 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 5 Felonies: Between 12 and 72 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 6 Felonies: Between six and 30 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Class A Misdemeanors: Up to 12 months in county jail and a fine of up to $5,000.
Courts in Indiana usually dole out the most severe sentences to offenders with a long history of committing violent crimes. First-time offenders, on the other hand, tend to receive more lenient penalties.
Collateral Consequences of Domestic Violence Convictions
In addition to fines and prison time, people who commit domestic battery in Indiana also receive criminal records.
These records can cause them to experience a wide range of life-altering collateral consequences, like:
- Trouble Finding Housing: When landlords run a background check on potential tenants and find that they have a criminal record, they are likely to reject the application.
- Difficulty Landing a Job: Most companies in Indiana have policies against hiring violent felons.
- Professional Licensing Issues: People who commit domestic violence can have a lot of trouble securing the licenses they need to work in their field.
- Immigration Problems: The federal government regularly deports non-citizen felons after they serve out their prison sentences.
- Child Custody Challenges: When a family court finds out about a person’s domestic violence conviction, it may restrict their access to their child.
- Loss of Gun Rights: People who commit felony offenses do not have the right to buy, carry, or use firearms in the state of Indiana.
- Restraining Orders: A person convicted of domestic violence could be named as the subject of a restraining order in the state of Indiana. In turn, that person might be prohibited from contacting family members, seeing their children, and even remaining in their own home.
- Sex Offender Registration: If a crime of domestic violence is sexually motivated or involves sexual contact, the defendant may be required to register as a sex offender with the state of Indiana.
Are you currently facing felony or misdemeanor domestic battery charges in the state of Indiana? If so, please do not hesitate to get in touch with a lawyer from Suhre & Associates, LLC, in Indianapolis. We have many years of experience in the legal field, and we would be more than happy to help you fight to avoid the negative consequences of a criminal conviction.
Defenses Against Domestic Violence Charges in Indiana
The negative consequences of domestic violence convictions in the state of Indiana can have a devastating impact on an individual’s life. Luckily, it is often possible for arrestees to escape conviction.
Defense strategies can include:
- Proving that they were elsewhere when the offense occurred
- Arguing that the state does not have enough evidence to convict
- Claiming that their accuser is lying about how they got their injuries
The team at Suhre & Associates, LLC, has been helping Indianans devise effective domestic violence defense strategies for many years. To have us do the same for you, all you need to do is give us a call or send us a short message.
How Suhre & Associates, LLC, Can Help You Avoid the Consequences of a Domestic Violence Conviction
Getting arrested on a domestic violence charge in Indianapolis is never an enjoyable experience. Fortunately, assistance is available. Should you hire a skilled criminal defense lawyer from Suhre & Associates, LLC, we will aid you with your battle to avoid the consequences of a conviction by:
- Helping you understand how the Indiana justice system functions
- Answering any questions you may have about your criminal case
- Looking for evidence to back up your side of the story
- Consulting with experts about the nuances of your case
- Negotiating a plea bargain deal with the state’s attorney
- Arguing on your behalf in court, if necessary
Are you ready to have an attorney from Suhre & Associates, LLC, help you fight back against your domestic violence charge? Please reach out to us today to set up a free consultation at our Indianapolis law offices. We have been working on cases like yours for years, and we are ready to do battle on your behalf.
Need More Info About the Consequences of a DV Conviction? Contact Our Indianapolis Law Firm Today
If you have any additional questions about the negative consequences of a DV conviction in Indiana, please do not hesitate to reach out to the legal team at Suhre & Associates, LLC, as soon as you can. We will be happy to provide you with the information you need. You can contact us by email or phone – whichever is better for you.