Any person in the greater Atlanta area knows that romantic relationships, marriages and family dynamics can be stressful.
An altercation with a spouse, significant other or a teen or young adult child can quickly escalate into a call to the police.
Once that happens, depending on whose story the police believe, a Gwinnett County resident could find themselves accused of what often gets referred to as family violence battery.
A person might be tempted to just plead guilty to the charge, especially if they feel they had a role in the incident getting out of hand
The prosecutor may offer a very good deal to a first-time offender that does not include jail time, and it may seem easier just to put the matter in the past.
Certainly, avoiding jail is a benefit, but this sort of thinking can turn out to be a costly mistake. Domestic-violence related offenses are crimes, and as such, they go on a person’s permanent record.
Especially since they are violent crimes, a conviction can have long-term professional and personal consequences, even for someone who otherwise has an untarnished record.
- Many jobs, professions and even hobbies are not open to people with any history of domestic violence.
- On a related point, regulators of many trades and professions will take licensing action against those convicted of crimes related to domestic violence.
- After a conviction, a person may have to follow a restrictive protective order or other court mandates that can limit their ability to live in their home or go to locations they enjoy. Protective orders can include other hardships as well.
- Those convicted of a crime related to domestic violence lose their right to possess or own firearms under federal law.
- Non-citizens may face deportation over a single crime related to domestic violence.
- Parents convicted of domestic violence may have difficult time getting custody or visitation.
Those accused of domestic violence should consider their alternatives
A single conviction for family violence battery or another crime related to domestic violence can ruin a person’s life and livelihood in many ways.
Before signing a plea deal, the person should make sure they understand their rights and alternatives. In many cases, it makes sense to put a vigorous defense against a charge.