Domestic Violence Laws in Missouri
Domestic violence is the umbrella term used to describe assault and other violent actions taken against family and household members. These actions are criminalized in an effort to protect victims against harmful forms of abuse. Domestic violence charges are taken very seriously by the courts and can lead to harsh penalties. They commonly occur after law enforcement is called to a domestic scene where they must determine if such a crime has taken place and who the main aggressor was. Unfortunately, these types of charges can be based on exaggeration, misrepresentation, and falsehoods put forth by victims which are then acted upon by a prosecutor.
Under Missouri law, domestic violence crimes are those committed against the following individuals:
- Current and former spouses
- Family members related by blood or marriage
- Persons with whom you cohabit or have cohabited in the past
- Persons with whom you are dating or have dated or had a romantic relationship with in the past
- Persons with whom you have a child regardless of marriage
If you have been accused of a domestic violence crime, it is imperative that you have a strong defender in your corner as soon as possible. Even the mere accusation of such a crime can negatively impact your reputation, put your job at risk, and derail your life. At Glaesman Law Firm, we are here to ensure that you have an advocate on your side who will fight for your best interests, for fair treatment, and for your future going forward with diligent and determined representation. Our St. Louis domestic violence attorney is an experienced trial lawyer who will do everything possible to get your charges dropped or reduced or to get an acquittal in court.
Missouri Domestic Violence Penalties
Domestic assault in the third degree is the least serious of this class of crime. It consists of trying to cause or recklessly causing physical injury, causing injury through criminal negligence with a deadly weapon, threatening the other person which puts the victim in fear of imminent injury, creating a risk of injury or death through reckless behavior, intentionally making some kind of physical contact that will be offensive to the victim, or trying to cause or causing the isolation of the victim.
Generally, these offenses are charged as Class A misdemeanors carrying penalties of up to a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. Repeat offenders, however, will likely face harsher penalties. For example, a third or subsequent conviction of this crime will be charged as a Class D felony carrying up to four years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
- Domestic assault in the second degree involves trying to or knowingly causing injury with a deadly weapon or through strangulation or causing serious physical injury through reckless behavior. This offense is charged as a Class C felony carrying up to seven years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
- Domestic assault in the first degree is defined as trying to kill or knowingly causing or trying to cause serious physical injury to the other person. This offense may be charged as a Class A or B felony depending on the circumstances. These felony charges carry five or 10 up to 30 years or life in prison.
You may also be required to pay restitution to the victim consisting of the reimbursement for his or her expenses, such as medical expenses, counseling, or the repair of any damaged property. You may additionally be subjected to an order of protection which is the state’s name for a restraining order. These will order you to stop any further type of abuse, restrict you from any contact with the victim, make temporary child custody orders, and more.
Also Serving St. Charles with Experienced Legal Representation
In the face of the above harsh penalties, you need a tough defender who will be tenacious in his fight for your liberty and your future. At Glaesman Law Firm, you can count on our dedication to providing you with superior legal help from the moment we come on board. We have the experience, skills, and resources to conduct a thorough investigation into your arrest and to do everything within the bounds of the law to help put you in the strongest legal position for the best possible results.
Talk to our St. Louis domestic violence attorney. Same-day appointments are available.