Grand Rapids Domestic Violence Lawyer
Charged with a Domestic Offense in Kent, Allegan, or Ottawa County?
Domestic violence crimes can have long-term consequences that can affect major areas of your life, from being restricted from your own home, losing custody of your children, to criminal penalties. These charges usually stem from a visit to your home by law enforcement when called out on a domestic disturbance.
Once they arrive, police will commonly arrest whomever they believe to be the main aggressor in an effort to protect the safety of family members. Once this occurs, it begins a criminal process that is out of your control and subject only to the decisions of a prosecutor. Even should your accuser recant or decide to drop any complaint, it will not matter. Only the prosecutor can determine how the case will proceed.
If you have been accused of a domestic violence offense, you need immediate legal protection. At Ryan Maesen, PLC, we have defended countless individuals facing these crimes. With a diligent and aggressive defense, we may be able to get charges dropped or reduced.
Our experienced trial attorney knows which strategies can be used in your defense and how the prosecution will most likely try to convict you. These cases are often based on false allegations and exaggerated accusations. We know how to get to the truth to expose them to the court in seeking a favorable result on your behalf.
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Domestic violence is covered under Michigan Penal Code Section 750.81. These crimes are similar to those involving assault and battery. However, they differ in that they involve individuals in a family, domestic, or dating relationship.
Those who can be victims and perpetrators of domestic violence can include:
- Current and former spouses
- Individuals living together or who have lived together in the same household
- Unmarried parents
- Current or former dating partners
Michigan classifies domestic violence crimes into two categories: 1. Domestic assault and 2. Aggravated domestic assault.
What are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Michigan?
Domestic assault occurs when an intentional threat of force is made against the alleged victim which puts him or her in fear of immediate harm. An actual physical injury need not have occurred to be charged with this crime.
- In a first offense misdemeanor, it carries up to 93 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500.
- In a second offense misdemeanor, potential jail time is extended to up to a year and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
- A third offense is charged as a felony with a potential of up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000. Other penalties can include probation, community service, and counseling.
- Aggravated domestic assault occurs when the alleged victim is seriously injured. It is punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. Subsequent convictions will result in steeper penalties. Felonies are charged when domestic assault includes the intent to do great bodily harm or when the assault includes strangulation or suffocation.
In domestic violence charges, you may also be subject to a Domestic Relationship Personal Protection Order barring you from entering your home, having access to your children, owning a gun, and more.
It is important to understand that domestic violence convictions are not eligible for expungement. This means that, once you’re charged, it will remain on your record forever. You need to do everything you can to prepare a solid defense to keep your record clean. At Ryan Maesen, PLC, we will use every legal means to help you in that endeavor. Work with an attorney who has the experience needed to help you fight charges.
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“I needed a criminal attorney and I needed one fast. I only had two weeks until my first court appearance when I started my search. Mr. Maesen's name was one of several that came up on my search and I promptly called.” - Kelly
“Ryan is a knowledgeable, professional general law practice attorney. I highly recommend him to anyone in need of an attorney, particularly for real estate matters and criminal defense.” - Sharon
“Was facing a 25 to life CSC case. We tried it and we won. He has great trial skills and did a knockout job cross-examining my accuser.” - Richard