Rhode Island Domestic Violence Lawyer

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The State of Rhode Island has strict laws when it comes to domestic violence. Domestic violence cases can have lasting repercussions for all parties involved, including harsh penalties for the Defendant who is charged with domestic violence. This is why is is important to hire an experienced Rhode Island Criminal Defense lawyer to help with your case if you are charged with a domestic violence offense. Attorney David Ellison has represented hundreds of people on domestic violence charges throughout his career.

What qualifies as a domestic relationship in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island General Laws § 12-29-2(b) defines a “Family or household member” as the following:

  • spouses
  • former spouses
  • adult persons related by blood or marriage
  • adult persons who are presently residing together or who have resided together in the past three (3) years
  • persons who have a child in common regardless of whether they have been married or have lived together
  • persons who are, or have been, in a substantive dating or engagement relationship within the past one year which shall be determined by the court’s consideration of the following factors: (1) The length of time of the relationship; (2) The type of the relationship; (3) The frequency of the interaction between the parties.

Domestic Assault in Rhode Island

Domestic assault and domestic violence are very serious charges. They can result in jail sentences and potential lifelong consequences. There is a stigma against any individual who is accused of domestic violence. It is important to act quickly and work with an attorney who can help you protect your rights after getting charged with domestic violence.

Ellison Law LLC has attorneys who have represented hundreds of people charged with assault crimes, including domestic assault. They understand these cases have a serious effect on your personal life, including where you can live, your employment, and relationships with family. They handle a large number of domestic assault cases each year.

Domestic Assault Strategy

It is important to contact an attorney right away to help handle your case. If you hire Ellison Law LLC, we will make sure that we immediately start filing motions on your behalf. We will make sure to obtain all police reports, all witness statements, photos and other evidence the government may have against you. We will make sure to do our own investigation into what truly happened. Sometimes, domestic violence allegations can be false and made up for a variety of reasons. False accusations result in a grave injustice when you are charged with domestic violence.

What are Some Penalties to Domestic Violence in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island General Laws § 12-29-5, states that anyone who is convicted of a domestic violence crime must complete a batterer’s intervention program and pay an additional $125 assessment. If you are charged with a domestic violence crime, you face severe penalties including jail time, probation, fines and fees. For a misdemeanor offense, there are different penalties based on how many prior convictions you have for a domestic crime.

1st Offense Penalties:

  • Misdemeanor
  • up to one year in jail
  • batterer’s intervention program
  • extra assessment fees of $125.00
  • domestic no contact order

2nd Offense Penalties:

  • Misdemeanor
  • at least 10 days in jail and up to one year in jail
  • batterer’s intervention program
  • extra assessment fees of $125.00
  • domestic no contact order

3rd Offense Penalties:

  • Felony
  • at least one year in jail and up to 10 years in jail
  • batterer’s intervention program
  • extra assessment fees of $125.00
  • domestic no contact order

What Happens If I Own Guns?

If you are convicted under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act, you may be required to forfeit your firearm rights — it is important to let your attorney know right away if you own guns and get charged with a domestic violence offense in Rhode Island.

What is a Domestic No Contact Order?

A Domestic No Contact Order will make it illegal for the defendant to contact the alleged victim in anyway including phone calls, text messages, social media, in person contact, and third party contact through another individual. The violation of a Domestic No Contact Order may result in an additional criminal charge, a potential bail violation, and potential jail time.

What are Some Defenses to Domestic Violence in Rhode Island?

  • Self Defense
  • It Never Happened
  • The Alleged Victim is Lying
  • Not a Domestic Relationship

What are Some Different Domestic Violence Offenses in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island General Laws § 12-29-2(a) states any of the following crimes are domestic when committed by one family or household member against another:

  • (1) Simple assault (§ 11-5-3);
  • (2) Felony assaults (§§ 11-5-1, 11-5-2, and 11-5-4);
  • (3) Vandalism (§ 11-44-1);
  • (4) Disorderly conduct (§ 11-45-1);
  • (5) Trespass (§ 11-44-26);
  • (6) Kidnapping (§ 11-26-1);
  • (7) Child-snatching (§ 11-26-1.1);
  • (8) Sexual assault (§§ 11-37-2, 11-37-4);
  • (9) Homicide (§§ 11-23-1 and 11-23-3);
  • (10) Violation of the provisions of a protective order entered pursuant to § 15-5-19, chapter 15 of title 15, or chapter 8.1 of title 8 where the respondent has knowledge of the order and the penalty for its violation or a violation of a no contact order issued pursuant to § 12-29-4;
  • (11) Stalking (§§ 11-59-1 et seq.);
  • (12) Refusal to relinquish or to damage or to obstruct a telephone (§ 11-35-14);
  • (13) Burglary and Unlawful Entry (§ 11-8-1 et seq.);
  • (14) Arson (§ 11-4-2 et seq.);
  • (15) Cyberstalking and cyberharassment (§ 11-52-4.2); and
  • (16) Domestic assault by strangulation § 11-5-2.3.

If you are charged with a crime of domestic violence or if someone seeks a protective order against you, you should contact an experienced Rhode Island Criminal Defense Lawyer as soon as possible. Attorney David Ellison will meet with you to come up with a unique strategy on how to best defend your case. We will conduct our own investigation into the case and help you to come up with a defense for your charges. Do not wait to contact Attorney David Ellison today at 401-230-5520.

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