Have you or your loved one been charged with assault of a family member? If so, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible from a Houston assault family violence lawyer. An assault on a family member charge is a serious allegation made against many who are innocent. It can be a complex case filled with accusations and police reports. This type of assault can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony depending on the details of the case.
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In Texas, assault of a family member in Houston is usually filed as a Class A misdemeanor. There are two ways this can happened:
- If the person charged with assault does not have a previous “affirmative finding of family violence” on their record.
- If the assault caused pain or injury that is not considered serious.
The penalties for a misdemeanor assault family violence case will vary from case to case. The court will looks at prior convictions and probation or parole history. Some of the penalties that may be attached to a misdemeanor charge include:
- Treatment programs
- Short to moderate jail sentence
- Restitution to the victim
Even a light to moderate penalty can affect the person accused of assault family violence for a lifetime. Deferred adjudication of the sentence will leave a person with a record of “affirmative finding of family violence.” That finding will result in the loss of the right to possess a firearm for a period of time determined by the law. It also means an automatic felony charge if accused of assault of a family member in the future.
Assault of a family member that impedes breathing is filed as a 3rd-degree felony in Texas. Officers will ask the alleged victim if they were unable to breath for any period of time during an alleged assault. If the alleged victim says yes, then the officers will likely charge the person with felony assault of a family member due to impeding breath. This can result in prison time from 2-10 years and a felony conviction on permanent record.
Answers to Your Questions About Assault Charges in Texas
Under Texas law, a person can be charged with felony continuous family violence if they are accused of committing assault against a family member two or more times. But there are a few things to note:
• You don’t have to be charged with assaulting the same person.
• Depending on the case, the previous case may not have a time expiration.
• The previous charge does not have to have resulted in a conviction.
The answer is dependent on several factors:
• The Alleged Act- what exactly happened? Was there a weapon involved?
• The Existence of injuries- injuries generally point to a deeper problem in the household, and generally take dropping the case off the table.
• The Defendant’s Criminal History
Your rights to firearm possession will be taken away if you are subject to a Family Violence Protective Order. The only way to get your rights to gun ownership back are to have your conviction expunged or set aside, or if you have been pardoned or had your civil rights restored.
The state of Texas does not have a statute that specifically addresses domestic violence. Typically, these charges fall under Title 5, Chapter 22 of the Texas Penal Code. Sec. 22.01 defines assault as when a person knowingly engages in the following:
– intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes bodily injury to another, including the person’s spouse;
– Intentionally or knowingly threatens another with imminent bodily injury, including the person’s spouse;
Under the Texas Family Code: Title 4, Subtitle A, Chapter 71, Sec. 71.004, “family violence” is
an act by a member of a family or household against another member of the family or household that is intended to result in or reasonably places the member in fear of:
– Physical harm
– Bodily injury
Depending on the severity of the violence, the penalties upon conviction can be:
– Class C misdemeanor: Fine of up to $500
– Class A misdemeanor: Jail time of up to one year and/or fine of up to $4,000
– Felony: Two to ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine
Act Fast for Results. Hire a Houston Assault Family Violence Lawyer Today.
If you have been charged with assault family violence in Houston, you need the advice of an attorney as quickly as possible. Time is a very important factor the assault of a family member case. Statements made to police and the DA’s office will be held against the accused throughout the case. Houston assault family violence lawyer Lisa Shapiro Strauss can help keep your name in good standing by fighting assault family violence accusations.
These cases can be full of false accusations or incomplete police work. When police are called to the scene, officers may assume an assault occurred. This makes a family member assault case even harder to fight.
Lisa Shapiro Strauss understands that cases involving assault of a family member are emotional. As an Assistant DA, she spent six months as the Chief Prosecutor of the court handling only these types of cases. She now uses this experience to defend clients against domestic violence charges.