Missouri Domestic Violence Laws
Missouri Domestic Violence Laws
Missouri domestic violence laws are put in place to protect spouses and intimate partners, children, and other family members from harm from their loved ones.
Domestic violence is a serious issue that often involves multiple individuals. It is also a crime, under the Missouri law, to commit “domestic assault.” This is best described as an intentional infliction of a physical injury, or an attempt of such, to a member of one’s household or extended family members.
Generally, there are four levels or degrees of domestic assault in the state of Missouri, all of which have different severities of penalties. The highest level of domestic assault includes killing or inflicting severe physical injury to a domestic victim. Typically, domestic assault in the first degree is classified as a class B felony. When the victim has sustained serious injuries or been killed, however, it is treated as a class A felony.
If you have been charged with, or are being investigated for, domestic assault in Missouri, contact an experienced attorney for consultation and representation. The skilled lawyers at Carver, Cantin & Mynarich can help.
Penalties for Domestic Violence
The degree in question will determine the severity of the penalties for domestic violence that are requested. For example, first degree domestic violence is classified as a Class A felony if the offender has previously been convicted of the same crime or causes death or severe physical injury to the victim. Otherwise, it is treated as a Class B felony.
A second-degree domestic assault is treated as a Class C felony. Third degree is treated as a Class A misdemeanor, except when the defendant has been convicted of domestic violence more than twice before. In that case, the applicable penalty is that of a Class D felony.
If you have broken Missouri domestic violence laws or were charged with another crime and are looking to have your record expunged, it is vitally important that you seek legal counsel from a qualified lawyer.
Domestic Assault 2nd Degree Missouri
A person will be judged as having committed domestic assault 2nd degree in Missouri if the act involved a member of the household or family and have the following qualities:
- The offender intentionally caused physical injury to the domestic victim via any means. This includes, but is not limited to, using a dangerous instrument, a deadly weapon, strangulation, or choking.
- The offender inflicts physical injuries on the domestic victim.
- The offender uses any deadly weapon or dangerous instrument or recklessly engages in conduct to inflict severe physical injuries on the domestic victim.
Any domestic assault offense of the second degree is classified as a Class C felony.
3rd Degree Domestic Assault
A 3rd-degree domestic assault occurs if the offender tries to inflict severe physical injury on a family or household member or intentionally inflicts physical pain or illness to him or her.
A crime is classified as a 3rd-degree domestic assault when the offender is found to have done any of the following:
- Attempted to or inflicted physical injuries on a family member recklessly
- Intentionally injured a household member using a deadly weapon
- Intimidated a family member with the fear of an immediate physical injury
- Exposed a family member to a high risk of serious injury or even death
- Intentionally and offensively touched a family member
- Intentionally and unreasonably isolated a family member from others
A third-degree domestic assault offense is considered a class D felony.
Domestic Assault 3rd Degree Missouri
If you’ve been arrested in Springfield, MO for domestic violence or other crimes, it is essential that you contact a knowledgeable attorney. He will be able to provide advice and expert representation as you navigate a criminal case.
Domestic Assault 4th Degree Missouri
An offender commits the offense of domestic assault 4th-degree in Missouri if he or she does any of the following:
- The offender causes physical injury to another person due to criminal negligence with a firearm.
- The offender attempts to cause or recklessly causes physical injury, pain, or illness to another person.
- The offender recklessly engages in acts or behaviors that create a substantial risk to another person of serious physical injury or death.
- The offender purposely places another in fear of immediate physical injury.
- The offender knowingly engages in offensive or provocative physical contact with another person with the understanding that the other person will regard it as such.
Generally, assault in the fourth degree is a class A misdemeanor. If you have been charged with fourth-degree assault due to offensive physical contact, it is vitally important that you retain an attorney with knowledge of sex-crime laws.
Sentences for Domestic Assault Missouri
The sentences for domestic assault in Missouri vary based on the severity of the crime. In certain cases, a domestic assault in the first degree is prosecuted as a Class A felony. The sentence for a Class A felony conviction is a minimum of ten years in prison and a maximum of 30 years.
Usually, a first degree domestic assault crime is tried as a Class B felony. For this, the court can sentence the offender to prison for five to fifteen years.
A second-degree domestic violence case is charged as a Class C felony offense. This is punishable by a minimum of three years in prison and a maximum of ten. The offender may also be required to pay a fine of up to 10,000-dollars.
In some situations where an offender who is being charged with domestic assault in the third-degree has been previously convicted of the same crime two times before, he or she will be charged with a Class D felony. The penalty for this is up to seven years in prison and/or a fine of up to 10,000-dollars.
To better understand the differences, and negotiate a reduction in charges from a felony to a misdemeanor, contact a lawyer experienced in Missouri domestic violence laws.
Domestic Violence Missouri Resources
A range of domestic violence Missouri resources are available to provide assistance and protection. If you or other members of your household or family are living in fear, an ex parte order may be granted while you wait for the hearing that will provide a full order of protection to occur. A skilled attorney can help. No one should be a victim of domestic violence.
Missouri Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Missouri Coalition Against Domestic Violence has a mission to end rape and abuse in Missouri. Members use alliance, education, research, and public policy to further this cause. In 2017 they trained 2,166 advocates and managed the release of over 77-million dollars in funding for domestic and sexual violence services.
Domestic Violence Shelters in Missouri
Among other things, such as emergency shelter, etc. the domestic violence shelters in Missouri provide assistance obtaining child care, child support, food stamps, health care, and other needs.
Domestic Violence Laws Missouri
There are several domestic violence laws in Missouri designed to protect spouses, partners, children, and other household or family members. These criminal laws also apply to violent behavior directed at a stranger. A quick discussion with an experienced lawyer can clarify these issues.
Missouri Domestic Violence Statutes
There are several other several Missouri domestic violence statutes with which an abuser can be charged. Most of these are focused on terrorizing victims. These offenses include, but are not limited to the following:
- Child Molestation or Sexual Abuse
- Elder abuse
- False Imprisonment, which is interfering with an individual’s free movement without their consent.
- Parental kidnapping
Although there is a variety of available defenses, depending on the charges, it is best to contact a criminal defense attorney experienced with assault and sex offender laws for help if you are accused of domestic violence in Missouri.
Trusted Missouri Domestic Violence Laws lawyers in Missouri.
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