If you, your spouse, partner, relative or someone you know and care about has been arrested for domestic violence (sometimes called spousal abuse, domestic abuse or family violence) or served with a domestic violence restraining order stemming from an accusation of assault, battery or abuse against a spouse, former spouse, domestic partner, cohabitant, former cohabitant or person dated anywhere in San Louis Obispo, Santa Barbara or Ventura County seriously consider calling this office to discuss the matter in confidence with an attorney who is experienced in domestic violence defense and restraining order cases.
California domestic violence laws are complicated and the definition of domestic violence is broad. An arrest involving an allegation of domestic violence typically initiates more than one case. The first case is the criminal case where the person arrested has been charged with a violation of Penal Code Section 273.5, 243(e), 245, 422, 626.9 or a similar criminal offense, while a second related case which may be initiated is a civil restraining order case. Additionally, a domestic abuse incident may result in the couple ending their relationship, which may involve family law proceedings in a separate family law court and involve complicated child custody and property distribution issues. Furthermore, a person accused of domestic violence may be sued in civil court by the person who has alleged abuse.
Anyone arrested for domestic assault or domestic battery who holds a professional license (attorneys, physicians, nurses, pilots, stock brokers, teachers, or other professionals) or security clearances (police officers, fire fighters, government employees, members of the military or governmnent contractors) are at risk of having the agency which issued the professional license or security clearance initiate yet another case which may impact their license or one or more job critical certifications to practice their profession. As well, anyone owning a firearm or required to carry a firearm as part of their professional responsibilities may be barred from owning, possessing or carrying a handgun, rifle or shotgun.
Additionally, if a person is not a citizen of the United States, conviction of a criminal offense involving violence creates the risk of deportation, denial of naturalization, exclusion from admission or readmission to the United States, denial of the issuance or extension of an H-1B Visa which allows non-United States citizens to work in this country, or denial of an upgrade of status with the immigration authorities.
This law office represents people who have been accused of domestic abuse or family violence in California. Additionally, this office represents clients in applying for and responding to applications for personal conduct orders or protective orders such as a Domestic Violence Restraining Order, Termporary Restraining Order, Peaceful Contact Order, or No Harassment Order.
A domestic violence arrest is typically initiated when police receive a 911 call and and are sent to a home or public place where a couple has been arguing. A criminal investigation may also be initiated when a health care provider reports that a patient has sufferered injuries consistent with an injury sustained as a result of a domestic violence incident.
California domestic violence laws are strict and California police agencies have policies that require an arrest to be made whenever the legal elements of a criminal offense are present. Initially, the responding police officers must decide who was the primary aggressor. Oftentimes the police are mistaken about who was the primary aggressor because police officers don't usually see the incident, assume the person who called the police was not the primary aggressor, or are biased and assume that a man (when a man is involved) was the primary aggressor. In fact, studies suggest that police are biased towards arresting men in most circumstances. However, sometimes the police arrest both people involved in a domestic violence incident where bidirectional violence was involved.
Police officers are actively conducting a criminal investigation from the moment they receive the radio transmission dispatching them to a location where a domestic violence incident is reported to have occurred. The police dispatcher will relay the information provided by the person who called the police to the responding officers and may provide information about any prior calls from the address or reports involving the named parties. The telephone call to the police is recorded and, oftentimes, the information relayed by the police dispatcher from the 911 caller will influence the attitude and actions of the police officers once they arrive at the scene.
When law enforcement officers arrive at the scene of a suspected domestic violence incident, the couple is being subjected to a criminal domestic violence investigation and incriminating evidence is being collected. Each person's appearance will be recorded on a police report and photographs will most likely be taken of the person arrested, as well as the person who called the police. Special report forms have been developed by California law enforcement agencies which depict simple form figures so that injuries or the absence of injuries may be documented directly on the report. Photographs are often taken of the scene and recordings are typically made of statements made by the person who becomes the focus of the domestic violence investigation. Sometimes the area will be designated as a crime scene and crime scene investigators will respond to take photographs, sketch diagrams, and collect evidence to support a subsequent domestic violence prosecution.
"Sex crimes" is a general area of crime that includes everything from molestation or lewd conduct with a minor, to rape. Some other sex crimes include child pornography, Internet or cyber crimes, prostitution, sexual battery and indecent exposure. Some charges, such as molestation, can be initiated by a SINGLE complaint by a single person, and are some of the most serious charges a criminal defendant can face. Sex crimes can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, but are usually charged as a felony. They usually carry a maximum sentence of three, six or eight years in state prison for each individual act, and these full sentences can be added together for each act committed if force is proven. Many laws relating to molestation and other sex offenses now can result in criminal defendants being sentenced to life imprisonment or to sentences ranging from a few years in prison to hundreds of years in prison.
Also, many sex crimes do not allow for probation and require mandatory state prison sentences. A conviction for Molestation almost always results in lifetime registration as a sex-offender. A prosecutor can charge these offenses under many sections of the Penal Code, including the following sections: 243.4, 261, 261.5, 288, 288.5, 289, 647.6 and 647.
If you are suspected of having committed a misdemeanor or felony sex crime, or you have already been arrested and charged with a crime, it is essential that you secure the right defense. We can use the following methods to defend clients accused of sexual assault and other related sex crime charges:
We serve the communities of Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, and the greater state of California including, but not limited to the cities of Santa Barbara, Ventura, Oxnard, Westlake Village, Santa Maria, Camarillo, Goleta, Thousand Oaks, Santa Ynez, Moorpark, Simi Valley, Newbury Park, Ojai and Carpinteria. We are a general practice focusing on estate planning and probate, family law and business law. These areas of law include, but are not limited to, trusts, wills, divorce, child custody, child support, adoption, spousal support, prenuptial agreements, business formation, governance and litigation. This website is for informational purposes only. Using this site or communicating with Seige Law through this site does not form an attorney/client relationship. This site is legal advertising.