Domestic violence affects everyone involved in it. Whether you are the victim or the offender or the family member. Unfortunately, domestic violence has become a common problem and there are various forms of violence, intimidation, and threatening which can come under this category.
What is domestic violence?
1. Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior that a person uses against his or her spouse, former spouse or partner. It is not mandatory to physically beat someone but some behaviors could be counted as domestic violence like-
a. Sexual harassment (by force or coercing).
b. Physical assault (hitting, pushing, kicking, shoving, and spitting).
c. Intimidating you for doing a job you don’t want to do.
d. Threatening you with word or action.
e. Stalking (following you and harassing you)
f. emotionally abusing (constant criticism, intentional demotivating comments).
g. Isolating you from your children or family members.
h. economic abuse (stopping you from going to the job, handling your money or not giving you money).
According to the U.S Department of Justice and the Bureau of Justice Statistics and the Centre for disease control and prevention-
a. Approximately 1.3 million women become a victim of domestic violence by their intimate partners.
b. In 80% of the cases, the male partner physically abuses their female partners.
c. Almost one-third of a female victim in homicides are killed by their intimate partner.
d. 18.5 million mental health care visits are done by intimate partners.
e. 85% of domestic violence victim are women.
f. In 70%-80% homicide cases, the male partners severely abused their female partners.
g. Those boys to witness domestic violence in the parents are more prone to commit the same domestic violence in their adulthood.
h. 30%-60% domestic violence offender also abuse their children.
i. witnessing their parents in domestic violence abuse many bring mental trauma to their children.
The above-written points are the reason why courts go too hard on such cases because domestic violence cases not only affect the person but break down the whole family, especially children who are innocent to understand the severity of the case.
The challenges in front of the defense attorney-
It becomes quite hard of a defense attorney to free his client because it is mandatory for a cop to arrest the domestic violence offender without any delay so the attorneys are generally called when their clients are already in the custody-
1. Challenge to break the perception-
When a person is got arrested in domestic violence case, a perception is made against him/her that they must be punished severely and the courtroom official suffers from the same perception. Sometimes it becomes quite harder to get even a bail.
2. Challenge to gather the proofs-
Generally, most domestic violence cases involve physical abuse against the victim and a medical test is required to complete the probe. If the medical test result is against your client then it is most probably that the case is gone. A domestic violence defense lawyer has to bring so many proofs in favor of his/her client and it is a hard nut to crack.
3. Challenge to save your client from mental trauma-
Being arrested in a domestic violence case can install a feeling of guilt, shame and sorrow to the offender. It is one the most important job of the defense attorney to keep his mental condition on a positive note. He must keep a constant touch with them and tell them about those points which can be helpful for them.
4. Challenge to make a communication with the victim-
Many times there is the victim which can bring some important information or point which can be helpful in the case. If you are the defense attorney and you have a domestic violence case at your table, then make sure that apart from your client (the offender), you must also talk to the victim, their family member, neighbors, and kids. These are the people who had witnessed the violence and they can bring light to many important points.
5. Challenge to acquit your client on a bail-
Even if the domestic violence case is not quite violent in nature, and no great physical harm is done to the victim. Still, due to a prejudiced mindset of the people, the offender does not get bail so easily. A defense attorney has to put all his efforts and energy to turn the tide in his client’s favor and get a bail for him or her.
6. Challenge to keep the sentence as minimum as possible-
There are several harsh implications associated with a domestic violence case and if the charges are found true then there could be a harsh sentence waiting for your client.
It is the job of the defense attorney also that if your client is has been proved guilty then you could at least try to minimize the penalty with fewer sentences and monetary penalties.