Domestic Violence

E. Powers Price

By: E. Powers Price, Family Law Attorney, Domestic Violence, and James H. Price IV, Domestic Violence Defense Attorney Near Me, Greenville SC

A domestic violence conviction can have an adverse impact on where you live, your job, your right to bear arms, and more. This criminal charge may be the final straw leading to the filing for divorce and can impact child custody arrangements. 

For the last 25 years, penalties for any type of domestic violence cases based on abusive behavior have been increased. New statutes on the domestic violence meaning have revolutionized the defense of family law criminal offenses and allowed for warrantless arrests by law enforcement and ex-parte protection orders.

James Hardy Price

South Carolina has four different domestic violence charges. Ranging from most severe to least severe, the domestic violence charges are as follows: domestic violence high and aggravated, domestic violence 1st degree, domestic violence 2nd degree, domestic violence 3rd degree.  The specific facts of the allegations and the criminal history of the accused determine the severity of the charge. More information about these charges can be found here. The maximum possible punishment for each charge is listed below:

ChargeFelony or MisdemeanorPenalty
DV 3rd DegreeMisdemeanor Up to 90 days and/or $1,000-$2,500
DV 2nd DegreeMisdemeanorUp to 3 years and/or $2,500-$5,000
DV 1st DegreeFelonyUp to 10 years
DV High and Aggravated (DVHAN)FelonyUp to 20 years

It is important to hire a criminal defense attorney who has experience with domestic violence  cases from the outset. Sometimes there are reports of domestic violence to try to manipulate family court actions, your relationship, etc. It can often feel like you must prove your innocence, especially in a self-defense situation which is further complicated by the fact that these are oftentimes “he said, she said” situations with no other witnesses. Sometimes an argument becomes heated which leads to the victim contacting police only to later try to have the charge dismissed. While this helps, it is often not so easy because police and prosecutors take domestic violence charges seriously.

If you are charged with DV 2nd, DV 1st, or DVHAN you have the right to a preliminary hearing, but your preliminary hearing request must be submitted within ten days of your arrest. This is an important opportunity to challenge the state early on, particularly on any of the essential elements of the charge. If you have been charged with any degree of domestic violence, give us a call at (864) 271-3535.

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