Domestic violence charges can be slapped on a person in a moment's notice. Some people are unable to control their emotions when they are angry, and they become violent and strike out physically. Does this sound like you? Then there are others who strike out by lying to get their adversary in trouble, and thus, to get even. Does this sound like your situation?
Whether your situation fits either of the scenarios above, if you are facing charges of domestic violence or battery, you need to know what you might be facing. First, to determine if you were rightly charged, domestic violence is committing battery upon: a blood relative, someone you are living with or dating, a minor child, or someone you have a child with. Police in Reno will arrest you, and are required to do so, if "they have probable cause" to believe you have committed domestic battery. You must serve at least a 12-hour "cooling-off" period before you are eligible for bail.
At this point, you may want to seek legal representation. You will want to avoid a conviction of the domestic violence charges if you can. Not only do you not want this on your record, if you have had previous offenses, the penalties get stiffer.
First offenders face a minimum jail term of two days, but not more six months. A second offense within the next seven years will be a minimum of 10 days and not more than six months; a third offense within the seven-year period is considered a category C felony and could land you in jail for one to five years. If you are a first-time offender, you might think two days in jail is not bad, but the jail time is not the only penalty. There is also a minimum of 48 hours of community service, fines of at least $200 plus, one and a half hours of counseling required per week for at least six months (which you pay for), and a $35 domestic violence fee. As you can imagine, all of those requirements increase with each offense.
If a judge finds you guilty, the alleged victim will be given a chance to address the court about how he or she has been impacted by your alleged actions. The judge will then allot sentencing as appropriate under the guidelines of the law.
If you have been accused of a crime in Nevada, contact Fahrendorf, Viloria, Oliphant & Oster L.L.C. to discuss your options with an experienced Reno criminal defense attorney.
Source: City of Reno, "Domestic Violence," accessed Dec. 23, 2015