Whether you’re facing a domestic violence charge in San Diego, understanding the differences between a felony and misdemeanor charge is crucial. While felony charges are more severe, there are several other factors that distinguish these two types of charges.
What Constitutes a Misdemeanor Domestic Violence Charge?
Misdemeanor domestic violence charges encompass various common forms of abuse, including battery, threats, neglect, and verbal abuse. Assault and battery are the primary offenses associated with misdemeanor charges. Assault involves deliberately threatening physical violence against another person, and it must be proven that the victim believed they were in danger of physical harm. Battery occurs when the offender goes beyond threats and causes physical harm to the victim.
Additionally, serious emotional abuse, such as verbal abuse and manipulation, is considered a misdemeanor act of domestic violence in California. Misdemeanor domestic violence laws aim to protect individuals who share a residence, including dating partners, spouses, elderly individuals, children, and roommates. If convicted of a misdemeanor act of domestic violence, the offender may face up to one year of imprisonment and fines.
What Constitutes a Felony Domestic Violence Charge?
Felony domestic violence charges occur when one person causes significant physical injury or harm to another resident in the same household. The law provides protection for spouses, grandparents, children, roommates, and dating partners. Felonies also encompass acts such as sexual assault, kidnapping, and rape.
It’s important to note that certain factors can elevate a misdemeanor charge to a felony charge. These aggravating factors include causing severe harm to another individual, using or threatening to use a deadly weapon, causing injury to a child, and engaging in any form of sexual abuse. Felony charges in California carry severe penalties, including substantial fines and lengthy prison sentences.
Unfortunately, false accusations in complicated relationships are not uncommon. If you find yourself falsely accused of domestic violence in California, whether it’s a felony or misdemeanor charge, it’s crucial to seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney in California.
California Domestic Violence Criminal Defense Attorney
At Coastal Legal Center, we are dedicated to representing those who have been wrongfully accused or unfairly charged with serious crimes. We believe in fighting for justice and ensuring innocent individuals are not wrongly punished. If you’re facing domestic violence charges in California, do not hesitate to schedule a free consultation by calling 619-231-0724. Our experienced attorneys are here to help you navigate the legal process and protect your rights.