Houston Lawyer Charles Johnson
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Have you been falsely accused or wrongly prosecuted for domestic violence? False allegations and wrongful prosecutions harm the innocent, squander resources, and shortchange true victims.
If you or someone you care about has been arrested or is facing criminal charges related to Domestic Violence (or “Assault Family Violence”), there may be a lot at stake. You may only have a short period of time to learn your rights and what steps could help you protect them. The Charles Johnson Law Firm can help you understand the charges that you are facing, and help you protect your rights with the police and in court.
Criminal charges don’t always mean a guaranteed conviction. A conviction can bring penalties including court fines, probation or jail time – plus a permanent mark on your record – but you may be able to avoid these by fighting for your freedom. Domestic assault is taken seriously by law enforcement personnel and prosecutors. It is vital to have a competent, experienced defense attorney on your side.
Houston Lawyer Charles Johnson can be reached 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling 713-222-7577 or toll free 877-308-0100. As the justice system has come to recognize the social and legal effects of domestic violence, the penalties for conviction of domestic assault have become steeper. This is why it is so important to consult a lawyer who is familiar with your local court system. Seek the help of an attorney from the Charles Johnson Law Firm in Houston, Texas to learn more about what you can do to assert your rights.
Why Should Persons be Concerned about False Allegations of Domestic Violence?
Approximately two million Americans experience intimate partner violence each year. These persons need counseling services, legal assistance, shelter resources, and protection by the criminal justice system.
Unfortunately, each year 2-3 million restraining orders are issued in the United States, of which as many as 80% are unnecessary or false. As Elaine Epstein, former president of the Massachusetts Bar Association, revealed, “Everyone knows that restraining orders and orders to vacate are granted to virtually all who apply…In many cases, allegations of abuse are now used for tactical advantage. “
False accusers not only divert resources away from the true victims of domestic violence, they render harm to the targets of their legal abuse. False allegations stain a person’s reputation, deplete that person’s assets, and can ruin a person’s career. They may deprive a child of parental love and attention which every child needs.
What are the Warning Signs of an Impending False Allegation?
A false allegation can be a life-altering experience. But falsely accused persons often don’t see it coming.
These are some of the warning signs to look for:
- Your partner has gotten a restraining before and knows how to work the system.
- You and your partner are thinking about separating, and you are worried about an impending child custody dispute.
- Your partner is moody, unpredictable, attention-seeking, demanding, manipulative, or fails to assume responsibility for family problems.
- Your partner has been diagnosed with depression, borderline personality disorder, or other a psychological problem.
- Your partner has made a joke about getting a restraining order.
- You just discovered your partner is having an affair (do not confront your partner about it!).
- Your partner has been arrested for domestic violence, and is now considering ways to retaliate.
- Your partner has told you they are going to request a restraining order.
- Your partner has friends or family members who have done so.
- Be on the look-out for warning signs that your partner may file a false allegation of domestic violence against you, so you can take steps now to protect yourself.
What Should I Do if I Think my Partner is Going to Make a False Accusation?
A restraining order is the most commonly used legal tactic to make a false allegation of domestic violence. If you have reason to believe your partner is about to make a false accusation, it is critical that you act quickly to protect your children, your reputation, your assets, and even your career:
- Contact Attorney Charles Johnson immediately at 713-222-7577 or toll free 877-308-0100 to protect your rights.
- Assemble your valuable papers (birth certificate, car title, legal documents, etc.) so they can’t be stolen by your partner. Place them in a newly-opened safe deposit box or other safe location.
- Open a checking account just in your name so your partner can’t take your money.
- Tell a family member or trusted friend, in case you need to find a place to stay on short notice.
- Change the passwords on your computer, cell phone, and personal bank accounts. Remove external hard drives and other electronic storage devices. Do not leave your cell phone lying around.
- If you have any firearms or other weapons, move them to a secure location away from your home. Do not engage in firearms training or target practice until the situation is resolved.
- Do not send or receive personal emails from your home computer. Use a computer at your office or at the library.
- Avoid any actions that could later be misconstrued in a court of law:
- Do not engage in put-downs or insults, especially in writing or by voice mail or an answering machine.
- Do not talk or joke about violence or suicide.
- Do not engage in kinky sex or joke about rape.
- Do not slap you partner, even if he or she asks you to.
- Do not play rough-house with your children.
- Do not smash your fist into the wall.
- Do not throw the TV remote control.
- Do not admit to doing something wrong or apologize for prior actions, either verbally or in writing.
- If your partner has engaged in abusive behavior, promptly obtain a restraining order in advance of your partner taking such action. Once you get the restraining order, change all locks to keep your partner out.
- If you need to see your ex-partner (for example, to exchange your children), do so in a public location, preferably a place with video monitoring.
- If you need to drop off something at your ex-partner’s residence, go with a witness.
- Be sure to document any conversation or incident that could later become a focus of attention in a courtroom.
Contact Houston Domestic Violence Lawyer Charles Johnson
It’s important to speak with an attorney as soon as you’ve been arrested. The sooner you contact an attorney, the sooner work can be done to prevent your charges from escalating into a conviction.
Harris County Domestic Violence Defense Attorney Charles Johnson knows how frustrating and hopeless things may seem right now, but urges you not to give up hope. There are many viable defense strategies for fighting domestic violence charges, and many things that can be done to ensure your charges don’t spiral out of control. You can depend on Attorney Johnson to thoroughly investigate your charges, and trust that he’ll make it known to the judge if he finds anything that may indicate the accusations were fabricated. The Charles Johnson Law Firm is here for you, and will do whatever can be done to make sure this ordeal results in the best possible outcome!
If you have been accused of domestic violence, don’t try to fight your charges alone.
Contact Houston Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer Charles Johnson for experienced and dependable representation. He can be reached directly around the clock, 7 days/week at (713) 222-7577.
Related News Stories – Domestic Violence Arrests in Houston, Texas
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Degrees of assault are defined according to state laws. Legal guidelines range by state, but generally, assault in the first degree is defined as when a person:
- With intent to cause significant bodily injury to another individual, s/he causes serious bodily injury to any person by means of a deadly weapon or perhaps a dangerous instrument; or
- With intent to disfigure another person very seriously and permanently, or to destroy, amputate or disable permanently a member or organ of their body, he or she causes this kind of an injury to any individual; or
- Under situations manifesting severe indifference to the value of human life, he or she recklessly engages in conduct that creates a grave possibility of death to another person, and thus brings about severe physical injuries to any person; or
- In the course of and in furtherance of the commission or attempted commission of arson in the first degree, burglary in the first or second degree, escape in the 1st degree, kidnapping in the first degree, rape in the 1st degree, robbery in any type of degree, sodomy in the 1st degree or some other felony plainly dangerous to human life, or of immediate flight therefrom, s/he causes a significant bodily injury to another individual; or
- While driving under the influence of alcohol or perhaps a controlled substance he or she causes significant bodily injury to the individual of another with a motor vehicle.
Second degree assault could perhaps involve intentional or reckless severe bodily damage to another person, or physical damage to any individual by means of a lethal weapon or perhaps a dangerous instrument. It could possibly involve interfering with a law enforcement officer, emergency responder, or teacher, while performing their responsibilities. If the injury sustained is a lot less significant, it might possibly be classified as assault of a lesser degree, that include “simple assault”.
The following is an example of a state statute governing simple assault:
Simple Assault. A person is guilty of assault if he or she:
- Attempts to cause or purposely, knowingly or recklessly causes bodily injury to another; or
- Negligently causes bodily injuries to another with a lethal weapon; or
- Attempts by physical menace to put an additional in fear of imminent significant bodily injuries.
- Simple assault is known as a disorderly persons criminal offense unless committed in a fight or scuffle entered into by mutual consent, in which case it is a petty disorderly persons criminal offense.”
Houston Assault & Battery Defense Attorney: The Charles Johnson Law Office
At the Charles Johnson Law Office, our criminal defense lawyer has been defending individuals against charges of criminal assault, domestic abuse, and restraining orders violations for more than a decade. In the event you have been accused of assault, get in touch with our firm to schedule a consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney. Contact us at 713-222-7577 or toll free at 877-308-0100.
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Assault and battery are two separate offenses. Each may be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on how the crime was allegedly carried out, the nature of the personal injuries that resulted and the laws of the jurisdiction. If you are confronting a charge of assault or battery, contact a knowledgeable lawyer from the Charles Johnson Law Firm in Houston, Texas to go over your legal rights and remedies.
How are Assault and Battery Defined??
Assault is an attempt to injure a person with force or physical violence. It is also defined as intentionally putting someone in fear or apprehension of such harm. Many jurisdictions include injuring someone in the definition of assault.
Battery is different from assault because it actually results in harmful or offensive physical contact with the victim. Assault can consequently be viewed as an attempted battery.
Typically, battery causes physical injury to the victim. This is not always the case, however. The offensive contact simply might be undesired touching. Usually, though, a defendant is arrested for battery if the alleged victim suffers an injury.
Types of Assault and Battery Penalties
Assault and battery charges can range from misdemeanors to the most serious felonies.
How the defendant is charged can depend on the circumstances of the alleged offense. Many states provide special protection for victims who are members of certain groups that are regarded as more vulnerable. For example, the assault of a child may result in a much longer sentence than the assault of a fellow bar customer. Similarly, assault or battery of the elderly; public servants including firefighters, law enforcement and emergency personnel; educators; handicapped persons; and expectant women might be treated more severely by prosecutors. Assault or battery committed due to the victim’s ethnic background, color, religious beliefs, national origin, gender or sexual orientation are often treated more seriously.
Assault or battery against a spouse or someone with whom the defendant shares a home or romantic relationship can lead to criminal penalties, in addition to a restraining order or protective order preventing the defendant from returning to the home or communicating with the victim.
Assault and battery that occur during the commission of another serious criminal offense will also be treated more harshly. If the defendant is accused of assault while attempting to rob a store, for instance, the punishment is likely to be more severe. Likewise, if the defendant intended to cause serious bodily harm during the assault, the sentence may be longer than if the defendant had not intended serious harm.
Some states have “three strikes” laws, that impose enhanced penalties for habitual offenders (typically those with a third felony conviction). If the assault or battery is charged as a felony, the defendant may be at risk for enhanced sentencing.
Houston Assault and Battery Defense Lawyer: The Charles Johnson Law Firm
A conviction for assault or battery may have some serious consequences, adversely affecting your life far into the future. Each case, however, is different and offers its own defenses. Contact an experienced Criminal Defense attorney from the Charles Johnson Law Firm in Houston, Texas to discuss a strategy for preserving your freedom.
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