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In New York, domestic violence—also known as family offenses—consist of certain violent and threatening crimes that are committed between individuals who share an intimate relationship. Not only can a domestic violence charge lead to serious criminal penalties (e.g., jail or prison time, fines, etc.), but it can also result in being subject to a restraining order.
If you have been accused of domestic violence in Brooklyn, look no further than Lebedin Kofman LLP to help you obtain the best possible outcome in your case. Our experienced legal team can thoroughly examine your situation, listen to your story, determine all your available legal options, and defend you from start to finish.
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Under New York Law, there is no single crime known as “domestic violence.” Therefore, domestic violence is a broad term for certain offenses involving parties who share an intimate relationship with one another.
Common examples of intimate relationships include:
Current and former spouses
Current and former romantic partners
Two people who share a child together
People related by blood or marriage
In New York, a police officer may make an arrest if there is probable cause to believe a person has committed a domestic violence offense. Additionally, the police will arrest someone who has committed a felony against a household member or violated a protective order, if there is probable cause.
The following crimes are considered domestic violence offenses when committed between individuals who share an intimate relationship:
Assault – Hitting, punching, kicking, throwing objects at, or using a weapon against someone
Harassment – Repeatedly doing something that causes alarm or distress and does not serve any useful purpose
Menacing – Threatening to harm a person with or without a weapon
Stalking – Following, tracking, or otherwise monitoring someone
Disorderly conduct – Behavior that disturbs others, such as fighting or yelling
Threats – Saying something to make a person afraid
Intimidation – Doing or saying something to make someone afraid or force them to take a certain action or stop them from taking action
Coercion – Attempting to prevent a person from performing a legal action
Reckless endangerment – Putting someone in a dangerous position that might result in bodily injury
Criminal mischief – Destroying or taking property without consent, even if the offender and the victim both own the property together
Grand larceny – Stealing another person’s property worth over $1,000 without their consent
Strangulation – Choking or otherwise blocking the mouth or nose
Domestic violence offenses can be charged as either misdemeanors or felonies. A conviction can result in a lengthy jail or prison sentence, fines worth thousands of dollars, being subject to a restraining order, and a permanent criminal record.
An alleged victim of domestic violence can obtain an “order of protection” in New York. There are two types of orders: a temporary ex parte order of protection and a final order of protection.
A temporary order of protection can be obtained in family court or in criminal court (if family court is closed). If a judge believes there is “good cause” to grant the order, it will generally last until the date of the full court hearing.
At the full court hearing, both sides have an opportunity to present their case. A final order of protection typically lasts up to two years, but if here are any “aggravating circumstances” present, then the final order may be valid for up to five years.
Common examples of aggravating circumstances include:
Bodily or serious bodily injury
The use of a dangerous weapon or object
A history of repeated restraining order violations
Prior convictions for crimes against the alleged victim
Physical abuse in front of family members
Prior behaviors or incidents that makes a judge believe that the alleged victim and his/her family members face immediate and ongoing danger
Disobeying a temporary or final order of protection can be charged as criminal contempt, which can either be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.
Due to the seriousness of domestic violence offenses in New York, you need to hire a knowledgeable and skilled attorney to protect your rights and future. Do not hesitate to reach out to our firm, so we can get started developing an aggressive and personalized defense strategy on your behalf.
Contact us today at to discuss your case with our Brooklyn domestic violence lawyers.
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