July 18, 2009 By Wallin & Klarich

Why You Need a Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney

In a previous article, California Penal Code § 243(e)(1), or “simple domestic battery,” was discussed as one of the ways in which a person can be prosecuted for domestic violence in California. There are three ways someone can be prosecuted for domestic violence under California’s domestic violence laws and this article explains the remaining factors.

California Penal Code § 273.5, or “willful infliction of corporal injury”, is a more serious offense, in that it requires the accuser to at least suffer some type of injury. The accuser must sustain a “traumatic condition,” which can actually be as insignificant as a red-mark or scratch. Here, unlike in Penal Code § 243(e)(1), your “fiancé/fiancée” and “people you are or were dating” do not qualify as “intimate partners.” Although this section can be filed as either a misdemeanor or a felony, it would typically only be filed over the Penal Code § 243(e)(1) mentioned above if prosecutors were pursuing the felony allegation.

California Penal Code § 243(d), or “aggravated battery,” is the felony catchall for domestic battery offenses. This section, too, can be filed as either a misdemeanor or a felony, but would typically only be used in a spousal abuse situation if there was a “serious bodily injury” rising to felony level, and the accuser didn’t meet the definition of “intimate partner” in Penal Code § 273.5 above.

Finally, California Penal Code § 242, or misdemeanor battery, is “any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon another person.” This offense is usually charged when the person committing the battery has no domestic-type relation to the alleged victim, and there is no injury involved.

If you have been accused of committing any type of domestic violence, no matter how minor or severe the charges, the experienced San Diego domestic violence defense attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have the knowledge and experience to defend your rights. Contact us today for a case evaluation.

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