This article discusses a crime known (alternatively) as domestic violence (DV) or family violence (FV) in Georgia. All crimes in the Peach State are codified in the Official Code of Georgia Annotated or OCGA for short.
OCGA Assault and Simple Assault OCGA. Assault is placing someone in fear of apprehension or bodily harm. OGCA simple assault, a misdemeanor, occurs when some touching or contact took place but no cut, bruise or internal damage to the “victim” took place. OCGA simple assault is handled by Georgia’s misdemeanor-level courts, like the State Court of Fulton County.
OCGA Battery and Simple Battery OCGA. Battery is touching, hitting, or striking another person. A battery charge in Georgia has a misdemeanor component called OCGA simple battery or a “simple battery charge” in Georgia.
Recently enacted Georgia domestic violence laws (in 2010, 2015, and 2016) define family violence as being certain types of criminal acts between people occupying a household together, which usually occurs with one or more domestic partners who are family members. The possible penalties for crimes within that residence (or between those who formerly cohabited) are written in a way to punish more harshly than if two strangers got into a fistfight or public, verbal altercation.
While criminal defense is the central focus of the domestic violence Georgia law firm representing you, family law issues are also prominent in these cases (e.g., separation, divorce, etc.) When a judge feels that he or she must do something to “send a message,” he or she may sentence violent offenders to a year in jail.
These Kinds of Crimes and Conduct May Result in Georgia Domestic Violence Charges
The legal definition of various assault, battery and trespass crimes varies from state to state. Georgia battery and assault crimes are defined and written by the Georgia Legislature. Laws in the Peach State identify these three distinct levels (shown from highest risk to lowest) of likely harm or a fatal ending:
OCGA Aggravated Assault Georgia or OCGA Aggravated Battery
Assault or Battery
Simple Assault or Simple Battery Georgia
Examples of Georgia Family Violence Act Cases That Our Law Firm Defended
Non-compliance of a Judge’s “no contact order Georgia,” by texting a high school age child
Going back into the house of the wife (without her being present and without her permission) to get his possessions and committing OCGA Criminal Trespass
Screaming obscenities and threats to the mother of children who are in the adjacent room, and committing simple assault GA
Discharging a firearm against persons without legal justification, and committing aggravated assault OCGA
Using an object, device, or instrument offensively against a person which could be a deadly weapon (e.g., golf club or a tennis racquet)
Driving a motor vehicle toward a person to intimidate and frighten her about the risk of bodily harm
Taking steps that indicate aggravated assault with intent to murder the other person
Engaging in conduct and actions (words) that indicated an intent to rape
A person does not have to strike another or make physical contact. Simple assault can be an exchange of words that (to a reasonable person) would communicate a belief that a bodily injury is about to occur. Domestic violence is the same conduct as an assault, but the family-related crime is defined as occurring between members of the same domestic abode or household.
For example, a person could have an argument with their girlfriend. If they do not live together, it may not be a big deal. However, if they lived together at one time, it is a bigger deal according to the justice system. The key to what determines domestic violence is the word domestic.
The individuals involved must be people in the same household (at the present time or having lived together in the past).
How Much Jail Time for Crimes Involving Domestic Violence?
Like most crimes, repeat offenders are treated more harshly than a person facing a domestic violence first offense. For example, the crime of family violence battery in Georgia under O.C.G.A. 16-5-23.1 (f)(1) addresses this misdemeanor situation.
That 1st offense is a simple misdemeanor offense that carries a maximum jail penalty of up to 12 months, plus a $1,000 fine. A person’s 2nd (or subsequent) conviction involving the same victim or involving another family member will result in a felony offense that carries up to a maximum penalty of five (5) years in state prison.
Some crimes, on a 1st offense, can lead to lengthy prison time. For example, an aggravated assault Georgia first offender that constitutes the aggravated sexual assault (rape) of a child under age 14 carries a minimum of 25 and maximum of 50 years in State prison.
Conversely, a domestic violence felony charge can be a career-ender. Of course, our law office has dealt with false allegations of family violence before. In addition, in some cases our client has a good self-defense family violence issue.
Call today for immediate help before being taken to jail, if possible. In come counties, like Fulton County GA, a Fulton County restraining order may be put into place before you can contact a private lawyer to represent you. Under the excuse of clearing out inmates due to COVID-19, a public defender may be assigned as your DV lawyer to “represent” you, without knowing much (if anything) about you or your possible defenses.
Our metro Atlanta area domestic violence attorneys near me answer calls 24-7. Dial 404-567-5515, and the answering service will locate whichever DV lawyer is on duty. Our law firm provides a FREE lawyer consultation by phone call or virtual meeting via phone or computer, or by you coming to our office and practicing social distancing.