Jessica J. Travis has handled all crimes involving Domestic Violence and argued for and against Domestic Violence Injunctions.
Defenses to Domestic Violence charges
- Self-defense/ Stand Your Ground.
- Alleged victim is biased or vindictive.
- Injuries, or absence thereof, do not match alleged victim’s version of events.
- Mutual combat – Alleged victim consented to physical altercation by willingly engaging in the altercation.
Types of Domestic Violence
Domestic Violence crimes is a crime between a “family or household member” which includes spouses or ex-spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who reside together or have in the past and person who have a child together. Florida Statutes, Section 741.28.
Typical Domestic Violence related crimes may include:
- Battery, Domestic Violence
- Felony Battery
- Any crime against a person that involves a familial or intimate relationship – Aggravated Battery, Kidnapping, Murder.
Domestic Violence cases may also involve an injunction seeking to prohibit contact between the parties.
Penalties for Domestic Violence
Sentences for Domestic Violence crimes vary depending on the degree of injury and whether the offender has been arrested for similar charges in the past.
A first time Battery, Domestic Battery is a misdemeanor but may have long-term impact. It cannot be expunged. It prevents the Defendant from owning firearms. It may require mandatory jail time:
- Up to 12 months in jail with 5 days required upon adjudication if there is bodily injury;
- 12 months of probation;
- 26 week Batter’s Intervention Program (BIP):
- No contact order;
- Likely community service.
No Contact Orders
A person arrested for Domestic Violence related charges may be prohibited from having contact with their family or loved-one in three different ways:
No Contact Bond Condition
When bond is set, the judge will order that the arrestee not have contact with the alleged victim and witnesses. This prohibits direct contact, contact through third parties, contact by phone call and electronic contact (no emails, no text messages and no contact through social media.) If this bond condition is broken, a warrant will be issued and the accused will be re-arrested. An attorney can file a motion to get this condition lifted. It usually requires that the alleged victim also wants contact. Take bond conditions seriously and discuss them with an attorney.
If children were present expect the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) to get involved. DCF may prohibit contact between the arrestee and his family. DCF may require the spouse to keep the children from the arrested spouse. DCF requirements are in addition to – and are often stricter than – those imposed by the criminal court. Talk to an attorney about the best way to address DCF requirements.
The alleged victim may file for an injunction – also called a restraining order. Though part of the basis may be the criminal charges, the two cases are separate. If the criminal judge removes the no contact bond condition, the Defendant must still get the injunction lifted before he can lawfully have contact.
A person may obtain an injunction by filing a sworn petition under the following circumstances:
- Domestic Violence Injunction (Florida Statute, Section 741.30): When a person has been the victim of domestic violence or has reasonable cause to believe she is in imminent danger of becoming a victim of domestic violence.
- Repeat Violence Injunction (Florida Statute, Section 784.046(2)(a)): When a person has been the victim of repeat (two or more) instances of violence.
- Sexual Violence Injunction (Florida Statute, Section 784.046(2)(c): When a person has been the victim of sexual violence, has reported the crime to law enforcement and is cooperating with criminal proceedings.
- Dating Violence Injunction (Florida Statute, Section 784.046(2)(b): When a person has been the victim of dating violence or has reasonable cause to believe she is in imminent danger of dating violence.
- Stalking Injunction (Florida Statute, Section 784.0485): When a person has been the victim of stalking which is defined as willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly following, harassing or cyberstalking another. This includes threats, physical abuse and destruction of property. There is no requirement that the parties be in a domestic relationship or dating.
Jessica J. Travis has both asserted and defended against injunctions in Brevard County courts.
Violation of Injunction
It is an additional crime when a person violates an injunction (a court order) by contacting the other party. Violation of an Injunction carries a possible sentence of 12 months in jail. The Defendant violating an injunction faces arrest and a new criminal case.
Jessica J. Travis has defended numerous Domestic Violence allegations by getting witness statements, filing motions to lift no-contact orders, handling injunction hearings, negotiating plea agreements (if necessary), filing motions and going to jury trial. Call The Travis Law Firm, PLLC for a free consultation of your Domestic Violence charge in Brevard County, Florida: 321-728-7280.
Note: Florida laws are constantly changing. Please contact a Florida criminal defense attorney to make sure you have the most up-to-date information about the crime, penalties and defenses that you are researching. The information on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon in making important decisions.