As a Jacksonville Domestic Battery Attorney, I have represented hundreds of people who have been charged with Domestic Violence in Northeast Florida. Many of my prior clients, and their alleged victims, had no idea how serious domestic charges and a domestic battery arrest is. If the police are called out to a domestic disturbance, it is almost guaranteed that someone will be arrested. Often times, people call the police thinking that the officers will come out and separate the two parties or make the aggressor leave the house. The truth is, the officers don't want to take the chance of something violent happening when they leave. The result is, somebody is going to jail. That person is usually the one who did not call the police.
Once you are arrested for Domestic Battery the state attorney's office has to make a decision about your case. The prosecutor will discuss the circumstances of your arrest and any evidence collected with the police officer. He or she will also attempt to make contact with the alleged victim. In our Duval County Domestic Battery Law Firm, we are often contacted by the named victim in the case and that victim often times wants the domestic violence charges dropped. The alleged victim will be asked to take a class at the state attorney's office before their desires are listened to. Even then, if the prosecutor on the case thinks they can prove their case even without the cooperation of the victim, they could still proceed.
If you enter a plea to a domestic battery charge in Florida, there are certain minimum mandatory punishments. Florida law mandates that a person be adjudicated guilty (convicted) of the domestic charge, but an experienced criminal attorney could negotiate with the prosecutor and a withhold of adjudication is possible. Twelve months of probation is also mandated and you will have to complete the Batterers' Intervention Program through the Salvation Army. This is a 26 week class that must be completed to the satisfaction of the workers in charge. Homework and absolute attendance is required. If you violate the probation, you could be arrested on a violation of probation in Jacksonville and facing the same amount of jail time as your were on the domestic battery. Domestic Battery in Florida is a first degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months in jail.
That is why it is so important to consult with an experienced Northeast Florida Domestic Violence Attorney if you have been arrested on battery charges in Duval, Clay, or Nassau Counties. Our Jacksonville Domestic Battery Attorney is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us at (904) 365-5200 for a free consultation.