Several factors go into domestic violence charges, some of which can be a surprise to the person who faces them. Knowing what to expect after police approach you about suspected domestic violence can help you mentally prepare for what could follow. You could potentially lose certain rights once these charges are applied to you, but you do not have to settle there. Talking to an experienced Tennessee criminal law lawyer might be enough to help you evade the consequences of these charges.
When Can I Be Charged with Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence charges are given to people accused or suspected of physical or sexual assault. What many people do not realize is that these charges can also be given to people accused of emotional abuse, intimidation, or isolating a person from
others. Regardless of whether you made physical contact or not, you can still face charges. These charges cover a wide array of negative behaviors that can happen between married or unmarried couples who are living together.
Your partner or a witness can call the police to alter them about domestic violence. Police will arrive on the scene and will question you, the accuser, and any witnesses involved about the incident. Be prepared to be cross-examined by officers on what happened. They will compare your side of the story to others to detect contradictions and lies. While lying may help you out of certain situations, being caught lying to an officer may hurt your case and lead to worse charges.
Something else many people do not realize is that you can still be arrested in Tennessee for domestic violence, even if your partner chooses not to sign the consent form to press charges against you. This often happens when there are obvious signs of abuse like bruises, injuries, or an emotionally distressed victim.
Being Served with a Protective Order
Once the charges are filed against you, you may face additional penalties. A court may decide on an Order of Protection that will keep you away from the person you are suspected of abusing. This can come with a variety of limitations for you.
You may be prevented from seeing your partner and your children for a certain period of time. The order may keep you at a certain distance from them and can mandate you to no longer visit their home, place of work, or other frequently visited places they go to. In some cases, you may be ordered to pay child support or spousal support. If you have any firearms, these might be confiscated until further notice.
For marriages, temporary child custody arrangements can be made until certain legal decisions are made.