In Los Angeles, facing Domestic Violence charges can be daunting, with severe repercussions even before a conviction. If you or someone you know is facing such charges, immediate actions like being barred from your home or receiving a restraining order that prevents you from seeing your children might follow. The California Penal Code provides definitions and penalties for these offenses. If you find yourself in such a predicament, reaching out to a seasoned Domestic Violence attorney in Los Angeles, like Cyrus Tabibnia, is vital to begin the process of defending your rights and reputation.
Understanding Domestic Violence in California
The California Penal Code (Penal Code §13700 PC) describes domestic violence as abuse against an intimate partner. This could be a current or former spouse, domestic partner, live-in partner, someone you’ve had a child with, or a past dating relationship. Domestic abuse can manifest in various forms, including:
- Physical Abuse: Inflicting physical harm or injury.
- Financial Abuse: Controlling or manipulating financial resources.
- Sexual Abuse: Non-consensual sexual actions or behaviors.
- Verbal Abuse: Using words to belittle, demean, or threaten.
- Social Abuse: Isolating the victim from friends or family.
- Spiritual Abuse: Manipulating or controlling based on religious beliefs or practices.
- Threatening Behavior: Any actions or words that instill fear.
Common Domestic Violence Charges in California
Corporal Injury to a Spouse or Cohabitant:
Under Penal Code §273.5, it’s illegal to inflict physical harm on an intimate partner. Even minor injuries can lead to charges. Penalties can range from a year in county jail to four years in state prison, depending on the injury’s severity.
Defined in Penal Code §243(1), this involves using force or violence against an intimate partner without causing injury. It’s a misdemeanor, with potential penalties including up to a year in county jail and a $2,000 fine.
Child Abuse is specifically addressed under Penal Code §273(d). It is defined as when a defendant intentionally injures a child, resulting in visible harm. It’s important to note that the actions leading to the child’s injuries must not be part of what’s considered reasonable discipline. While California doesn’t outright ban spanking of children, it’s crucial that any spanking isn’t excessive. The classification of child abuse as a crime can vary; it’s a “wobbler.” Depending on the specifics of the case and the severity of the child’s injuries, child abuse can be treated as a misdemeanor, which can lead to up to one year in county jail, or as a felony, punishable by up to three years in state prison.
As per California Penal Code §273(a), child endangerment occurs if a defendant inflicts or allows someone else to inflict unjustifiable pain or emotional distress on a child. It can also be charged if a child is placed in a dangerous situation, even if no physical harm occurs. Child endangerment is also a “wobbler.” If the risk to the child involved great bodily harm or death, it could be charged as a felony with penalties of up to six years in state prison. Otherwise, it could be a misdemeanor with penalties of up to one year in county jail.
Under Penal Code §270 PC, child neglect happens when a parent willfully fails to provide basic necessities like food, shelter, or clothing to their child. It’s a misdemeanor offense, and a conviction can result in up to one year in county jail and a fine of up to $2,000. It’s important to note that if a parent’s inability to provide is due to poverty, it’s not considered a crime.
Elderly individuals, those over 65, are protected under Penal Code §368 PC. This code covers physical, emotional, and financial abuse, with penalties ranging from misdemeanor charges to felony convictions.
Violating a Restraining
Defined by Penal Code §273.6 PC, knowingly violating the terms of a protective or restraining order is a crime. A first-time violation is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000. Subsequent violations or violations that result in physical injury can lead to more severe penalties.
Under Penal Code §240 PC, simple assault is an attempt to commit a violent injury on someone else. It doesn’t require actual physical contact, just the intent. Conviction of simple assault is a misdemeanor and can result in up to six months in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Defined by Penal Code §422 PC, making a criminal threat involves threatening to harm or kill someone, even if you don’t intend to carry out the threat. It’s a “wobbler” offense, meaning it can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. A misdemeanor conviction can lead to up to one year in county jail, while a felony conviction can result in up to four years in state prison.
Making an annoying phone call
Under Penal Code §653m PC, making obscene, threatening, or repeated phone calls with the intent to harass or annoy is a crime. Conviction is typically a misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Dissuading a witness from reporting a crime
Defined by Penal Code §136.1 PC, this involves preventing or attempting to prevent a witness or victim from reporting a crime or testifying. It’s a “wobbler” offense. A misdemeanor conviction can lead to up to one year in county jail, while a felony conviction can result in up to four years in state prison.
Damage to a telephone or cable line
Under Penal Code §591 PC, intentionally damaging or disconnecting a phone or cable line is a crime. It’s typically charged as a felony, with penalties of up to three years in state prison.
Consequences of a Domestic Violence Conviction
Beyond jail time and fines, a domestic violence conviction in California can lead to mandatory domestic violence classes, victim restitution, a permanent criminal record, and potential loss of child custody rights. If weapons are involved, the charges can escalate, impacting immigration status for non-citizens.
Defending Against Domestic Violence Charges
Events leading to domestic violence charges can be complex, often involving differing narratives. Recognizing this, experienced domestic violence defense attorneys in Los Angeles, like Cyrus Tabibnia, are well-versed in various defenses, from proving the injuries were accidental to demonstrating false accusations or self-defense claims.
Experienced Domestic Violence Lawyer in Los Angeles
If you have been accused of a domestic violence crime in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura County or Orange County, it is important that you seek the services of Los Angeles domestic violence lawyer with extensive experience. If you have just had an argument and the police were called or are under investigation for this offense in the Los Angeles or Southern California area, call Cyrus Tabibnia. Mr. Cyrus understands the serious nature of this offense, how best to defend you, and how to resolve your case without you going to jail. Our Los Angeles domestic violence attorney has extensive knowledge of the law and the legal system. He has developed excellent relationships with law enforcement and law officials throughout Southern California areas including Los Angeles, Ventura County, Sherman Oaks, .
For more information about the various defenses for your case, and to schedule your free consultation, contact Cyrus Tabibnia at Tabibnia Law Firm. Mr. Cyrus can be reached 24/7 at 866-713-2159
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