Family disputes often trigger emotional responses. A single outburst against a loved one might have serious criminal and domestic consequences in Wisconsin. Further, offenders convicted of domestic violence often struggle to find work and take active roles in their children’s lives. Do not let family abuse allegations change the course of your life. Contact the experienced criminal defense and family law attorneys at Hogan Eickhoff immediately for a free consultation.
Understanding Domestic Violence Offenses & Penalties in Wisconsin
Wisconsin adopted extensive provisions governing domestic abuse claims and prosecutions in the State. Under Wisc. Stat. § 968.075, domestic abuse occurs when an offender victimizes a spouse, ex-spouse, co-parent, or adult household member by:
- Purposefully causing physical injuries, pain, or an illness
- Tormenting or impairing an otherwise disabled victim
- Raping or sexually assaulting a household member
- Engaging in a physical act or threats causing imminent fear of physical or sexual harm
Complete defenses to domestic violence charges often involve submitting evidence to defeat an essential element of the crime. Such evidence may include sending prosecutors your text or email history to show there were no imminent threats of violence.
Offenders convicted of domestic-based offenses face criminal penalties for the underlying offense and potential sentencing enchantments depending on the relationship of trust between the parties. Additionally, certain family law consequences attach to qualifying domestic violence convictions in Appleton. Offenders might be removed from the household, subjected to a restraining order, denied equal asset distribution during a divorce, and lose custody of their children. These penalties often outweigh any criminal consequences of a domestic abuse conviction in the State.
Complete Defenses to Appleton Domestic Abuse Claims
Some household members falsify or exaggerate instances of domestic violence to obtain a beneficial outcome during custody and divorce litigation. Further, ex-spouses and custodial parents may submit evidence of previous domestic abuse pleas and convictions to the family court. Raising a complete defense to domestic violence charges now may prevent criminal penalties and protect your future interests.
The experienced criminal defense lawyers at Hogan Eickhoff might help clients establish the following substantive defenses to Wisconsin domestic abuse charges:
- Self-Defense – You may use reasonable force to defend yourself or another household member from bodily harm, including imminent threats of sexual or physical assault. Protecting yourself may include pushing an aggressor away or using an object or weapon to do so. Just because the aggressor obtained the injuries does not mean you committed a domestic violence offense
- Factual Fraud – To obtain a better result during divorce and custody litigation, ex-spouses might file false domestic violence reports. Tracing the circumstances and facts surrounding a claim with expert legal assistance might lead to the truth
- Mistake of Fact – The offenses underlying domestic abuse incidents often require criminal intent. Defendants must generally know the victim was a qualifying family member and intend to cause harm. Reasonable mistakes as to the individual’s identity or the belief you were defending yourself might defeat Wisconsin domestic violence charges
- Excluded Victim – Not every incident qualifies as domestic violence. Only some household members, co-parents, and certain significant others might demand protective orders and file domestic abuse reports
Successfully asserting these defenses with the help of an Appleton domestic violence lawyer often results in the dismissal of all charges. Defense counsel may also submit evidence of a not guilty verdict along with the meritorious reasons for dismissal to the family court during related litigation.
Fighting for Alternative Sentencing & Mitigating Domestic Assault Charges
During many domestic abuse incidents, both parties might sustain injuries. First responders must generally determine which party initiated the physical or sexual confrontation. One spouse may qualify as the primary aggressor, but this does not always absolve the other party. Even the initial non-aggressor might respond disproportionately to the violence and cause more significant harm. Further, Wisconsin judges will look for any provoking or mitigating factors.
Domestic violence charges often require investigators to consider the emotions and family circumstances leading to the incident. The non-aggressor may have started a heated argument that got out of hand, or the aggressor may have walked in on an adulterous event. While these factors do not excuse causing physical or emotional harm to another, they may mitigate the overall level of the offense. Experienced criminal defense lawyers could utilize these factors to negotiate a beneficial plea deal, argue for a lesser sentence, or request alternative sentencing arraignments. Wisconsin prosecutors might drop charges against one party in favor of agreed counseling when it appears both parties contributed to the severity of the incident.
Potential Family Law Consequences Associated with Domestic Violence Convictions
A domestic violence conviction may have life-altering consequences years after the even. Even dismissed spousal abuse charges might result in disproportionate asset distribution during a divorce or a denial of child custody and visitation rights. Presenting a complete and detailed defense to criminal domestic violence charges now might result in fairer treatment during future adoption, custody, and separation hearings.
Do not accept a plea deal or ignore the personal implications of a domestic violence conviction in Wisconsin. Family lawyers may work with defense counsel to submit evidence associated with the domestic abuse charges, such as a police report describing the reason for the incident, to explain the offense during divorce litigation.
Call Us Today to Schedule a Consultation with an Outagamie County Criminal Defense Lawyer
Because of the personal implications of domestic violence charges, both Wisconsin’s criminal and family laws address spousal abuse claims. Defendants charged with domestic battery often require both criminal defense counsel and family-based legal aid. Successfully mitigating criminal charges does not prevent Wisconsin family courts from considering the circumstances surrounding the claims and imposing harsh domestic penalties.
Criminal defense lawyers who do not practice family law might unwittingly harm their client’s future domestic interests. If you’ve been charged with domestic violence in Oshkosh, Chilton, Green Bay, or Waupaca, trust your case to the experienced criminal and family-based defense lawyers at Hogan Eickhoff. Connect with our Appleton defense team today by calling (920) 450-9800 or contacting us online.