Domestic violence refers to criminal prosecutions where a family or household member is accused of causing or threatening bodily injury to another family or household member. Domestic violence includes the classic situation where a woman is injured by her partner, but the definition has been expanded to include disputes between siblings, step-parents and step-children, and domestic partners. Law enforcement is required to make an arrest if they develop probable cause that a crime involving domestic violence has occurred. Once an arrest is made, most district attorneys will not dismiss the charges even if the alleged victim recants or no longer wants the defendant to be prosecuted.
The consequences of a domestic violence arrest begin immediately. In most circumstances, the court will order that the defendant not have any contact with the alleged victim and his or her residence until the case is resolved. Additionally, the court will often order that the defendant not have any contact with his or her children until the case is resolved. If a person is convicted of a domestic violence crime, he or she faces additional collateral consequences including a prohibition on owning firearms, denial of employment in certain fields, and difficulty finding housing.
I am a defense attorney based in Medford, Oregon, and I offer legal services and legal defense for those accused of domestic violence. My law office is in Jackson County, and I have represented hundreds of Southern Oregon clients accused of domestic violence crimes ranging from murder to menacing. In a significant number of my cases, the charges were dismissed before trial. I have also tried domestic violence cases to a jury, and in the majority of those cases the state was unable to convict my client.