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Domestic Violence. Understanding the Consequences in Georgia

The LaScala Firm understands how complex and difficult a domestic violence defense can be. As former prosecutors we can anticipate the prosecution’s abilities and counter them to offer the best criminal defense possible for a domestic violence case. With cases that have sensitive nature, such as Domestic Violence cases, The LaScala Firm works with the utmost diligence and confidentiality to deliver proper representation to our clients. Every criminal defense case is unique. It is highly recommended to hire a competent criminal defense team as soon as charges are brought. Hiring a team as soon as possible helps those representing you build a timeline and choose the most adequate defense strategy for your case. 

Defining Domestic Violence

The State of Georgia’s law codes define certain criminal charges to fall under “Family Violence.” These statutes have both delineated and ample interpretation depending on the charges and each individual case. Because of both legal and societal implications, family violence cases are sometimes some of the most sensitive. This is why having a competent criminal defense attorney, who has dealt with family violence cases, is imperative. Your representation should be able to understand both the law, its implications, and the broader personal implications a charge can bring. 

A conviction under these laws is considered harsher if placed under the family violence definition. Family Violence is defined as;

  1. Any felony; or
  2. Commission of offenses of battery, simple battery, simple assault, assault, stalking, criminal damage to property, unlawful restraint, or criminal trespass.

Committed Against

  • Past or Present spouses, 
  • Persons who are parents of the same child, 
  • Parents and children, 
  • Stepparents and stepchildren, 
  • Foster parents and foster children, 
  • Or other persons living or formerly living in the same household

What is a TPO?

A TPO is a Temporary Protective Order. This is more commonly known as a restraining order, although as the name suggests, it is only temporary. TPO’s serve as temporary protection for the accuser while the court sets a hearing date to determine charges and facts. TPO’s can last for a few weeks and stipulate a person stays at least 1,500 feet away. 

Violating TPO or permanent PO stipulations can have serious consequences on top of the charges already detailed above. Someone can be charged with Aggravated Stalking if violating a TPO. Establishing this violation gives the presiding judge room for discretion. Aggravated stalking comes with a felony charge and up to 10 years and $10,000 in fines

What is a Pre-Warrant?

A Pre-Warrant hearing is when a judge determines whether to issue a warrant for arrest against a defendant. It is highly advised to consult an attorney at this step of the process. Do not ignore a pre-warrant hearing as missing it will automatically cause a warrant to be issued.

Child Custody and Domestic Violence

A charge of domestic violence will not automatically mean that custody of a child will be taken away from a guardian or parent. As with any Child Custody case, the judge has the discretion to determine what is best for the child’s welfare and safety. If criminal charges are brought forth and convictions are made a parent or guardian may still be able to see their child under supervised settings to guarantee the safety of the child. Family violence charges can heavily affect the outcome of divorce proceedings and child custody cases.

Work With an Experienced Domestic Violence Lawyer Today

Michael LaScala has been representing clients in Criminal Defense cases for many years. Michael LaScala has worked as both prosecutor and a defense attorney so he can anticipate the prosecution’s strategy.

Contact the LaScala Firm at (404) 881-8866 or by submitting a contact form. We’ll get right back to you to arrange a time to discuss your case.

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