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Domestic Violence Attorneys Grand Rapids, Michigan

Domestic Violence Defence Attorney

If you face domestic violence charges, you need legal advice from Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The legal team of John Engman & Associates, P.C. can help you face these charges. Contact us today so we can get started on reviewing your case. You do not want to hesitate in calling. The sooner you have an experienced domestic violence lawyer on your side, the better your defense will be.  

Domestic violence can result from a heated situation that quickly spirals into something much worse. West Michigan Prosecutors take a firm stance against domestic violence offenders and push for the harshest penalties. They take these charges very seriously.

When you face a domestic violence charge, you have much to lose. You can lose your family’s respect, friends, and coworkers. You can lose employment opportunities. You can even land in jail.

Unfortunately, we see cases where a person gets falsely accused. For example, someone may get upset and contact the police to say they were battered, assaulted, or even threatened by someone they are currently in a relationship with or perhaps a past relationship. As a result, the police can arrest the accused person.

If this has happened to you, a family member, or a friend, protect yourself by calling John Engman & Associates. You want leading Grand Rapids Domestic Violence Attorneys in Kent County on your side as soon as possible.

What Is Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence encompasses a range of harmful behaviors, including assault and battery, that occur within various relationships, such as spouses, children, girlfriends/boyfriends, roommates, and individuals you are dating. At John Engman & Associates, P.C., our experienced legal team understands that domestic violence cases often brim with intense emotions. When it comes to defending your rights, Attorney John Engman takes a meticulous approach, focusing on the facts that will stand up in court. As a seasoned domestic violence defense lawyer, he is dedicated to achieving the best possible results for you.

Many clients mistakenly assume that domestic violence cases only involve physical injuries that are visible. However, abuse comes in various forms, including verbal abuse, sexual abuse, and isolation.

Examples of abusive behaviors that may lead to charges include:

  • Choking
  • Biting
  • Sexual abuse
  • Assault
  • Kicking
  • Marital rape
  • Acts of intimidation
  • Punching
  • Threats
  • Battery
  • Stalking
  • Misuse of telephone communications
  • Forced sexual acts
  • Slapping
  • Shoving
  • Pushing

In many instances, victims may initially hesitate to press charges, which is common in abusive relationships. Pressure from the accused spouse or relative often plays a role in attempting to have the charges dropped. Victims, having endured prolonged abuse, may perceive it as normal.

Beware of the Pressure from the Kent County Prosecutor

Prosecutors frequently attempt to persuade victims to plead guilty, banking on the fact that victims may not appear in court or testify against the defendant, often a husband or wife. Do not succumb to the tactics employed by zealous prosecutors. Our skilled criminal defense lawyers at John Engman & Associates, P.C. possess the expertise to shield you from such pressure, ensuring your rights are protected throughout the legal process.

Innocence Matters

We understand that many of our clients are innocent, and some alleged victims fabricate stories of abuse out of revenge. Rest assured, we will not rest until your case is dismissed or we secure a “not guilty” verdict at trial. Our top domestic violence lawyer is committed to delivering results.

At John Engman & Associates, P.C., we hold a deep understanding of the profound impact that false accusations and fabricated stories can have on our clients’ lives. We recognize that, regrettably, some individuals may exploit the legal system for personal gain or revenge. In such distressing situations, our commitment to justice and our clients’ innocence shines through.

Rest assured that when you entrust your domestic violence case to our team, we do not simply aim to navigate the legal process; we aim to secure your freedom and protect your reputation. Our relentless dedication to your innocence means we will leave no stone unturned, sparing no effort to ensure that your case is either dismissed entirely or results in a resounding “not guilty” verdict at trial.

Understanding the Consequences

For a first-offense domestic violence charge in Kent County, the potential penalty is 93 days in jail. However, it is essential to note that we have never had a client serve 93 days for a first-offense conviction. These charges are aggressively prosecuted, even if alleged victims withdraw their complaints.

If you are facing these serious charges, do not navigate this challenging legal journey alone. Contact our experienced Domestic Violence Attorney at John Engman & Associates, P.C., for the robust defense and guidance you need. We are here to protect your rights and fight for your future.

Throughout your legal journey with us, you will have the unwavering support of our legal team. We recognize the importance of clear communication, regular updates, and a compassionate approach as we work together to prove your innocence. Our goal is to not only provide you with a formidable defense but also to ensure you emerge from this challenging ordeal with your reputation intact and your future prospects preserved.

Michigan Domestic Violence Laws

Michigan Law regards domestic violence as abusive behavior, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, and any action used to control or dominate another person. Being married, used to be married, dating, having children together, and residing in the same house (past and present) are all considered domestic relationships.

Behavior that can lead to domestic violence charges include:

  •       Shoving & pushing
  •       Punching, slapping, kicking, choking, biting
  •       Forced sex, marital rape, sexual abuse
  •       Battery, assault
  •       Stalking, threatening behavior

It is common for us to hear that the victim did not want to pursue charges for their case, which is typical for abusive relationships. Sometimes, the abuser will pressure the victim to drop the charges against them. In many cases, the victim has come to think of the abuse as normal.

Kent County prosecutors will work hard in these circumstances to get the abuser to plead guilty; they know the victim is a no-show in court, and a wife or husband will not testify against the defendant. It’s crucial not to cave into this pressure; our legal staff knows how to handle these situations. We will protect you from overeager attorneys and prosecutors.

Our criminal defense law office knows that our client isn’t guilty in many of the cases we see. We have witnessed instances where a victim has made up a story to exact revenge against the defendant. When this happens, the attorneys at John Engman will fight to prove your innocence, get a dismissal on your case, or get a verdict of “not guilty.”

Second Offense for Domestic Violence

Second-offense domestic violence penalties are much tougher – 1 year of jail and fines as much as $1,000.

The Michigan Domestic Violence Second Offense Statue reads:

“An individual who commits an assault or an assault and battery in violation of subsection (2), and who has previously been convicted of assaulting or assaulting and battering his or her spouse, and individual with whom he or she has or has had a dating relationship, an individual with whom he or she has had a child in common, or a resident or former resident of his or her household, under any of the following, may be punished by imprisonment for not more than 1 year or a fine of not more than $1,000.00 or both….”

Anyone charged with a second offense of domestic violence is not eligible for the deferral deal under MCL 769.4a:

“[t]here shall be only 1 discharge and dismissal under this section with respect to any individual. Meaning you can only get the deferral once in your lifetime. 

If you have pled guilty or were found guilty of a domestic violence charge and never got the deferral, it gets determined that you have a prior “assaultive crime” conviction.

There is no statute of limitations for a past conviction getting used against you when charged with a second offense. Therefore, you can still receive a second offense even if the first conviction was more than twenty years ago.

If convicted of a second offense charge, it is still a misdemeanor; however, the jail time gets increased to one year spent in jail and fines of as much as $1,000. In addition, you may get ordered to do “work release” – you can go to school or work but have to spend the nights and weekends in jail. 

Domestic Violence Felony Charges

Facing felony charges for domestic violence is an immensely serious and complex situation that demands immediate action. If you find yourself in this challenging position, it is crucial to reach out to the seasoned professionals at John Engman & Associates, P.C. in Grand Rapids, Michigan, without delay. Felony domestic violence charges can have severe consequences, impacting various aspects of your life, including legal, personal, and professional.

Trusting the expertise of dedicated domestic violence attorneys at John Engman & Associates, P.C., is paramount in navigating the intricate legal landscape associated with felony charges. Attempting to face these charges alone can be overwhelming and may result in unfavorable outcomes. The experienced team in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is well-versed in the nuances of domestic violence cases and will work tirelessly to build a robust defense strategy tailored to your specific circumstances. Don’t underestimate the gravity of felony domestic violence charges—enlist the support of trusted legal professionals who can guide you through every step of the process and advocate for your rights.

Aggravated Domestic Violence

Aggravated domestic violence charges escalate when the victim sustains severe injuries necessitating medical attention. The severity of the situation further intensifies if a weapon is involved, leading to the potential reclassification of charges to felonious assault. In instances of aggravated domestic assault, the legal consequences are grave. A conviction may result in a one-year prison sentence and fines of up to $1,000, possibly both.

For individuals facing a second offense, the stakes increase significantly, with the possibility of a two-year jail term and fines reaching $2,500, and perhaps both. The repercussions of aggravated domestic violence charges extend beyond the legal realm, impacting various facets of one’s life. It is crucial to enlist the support of experienced legal professionals specializing in domestic violence cases to navigate the complexities of the legal process and construct a robust defense tailored to the unique circumstances of each case.

Understanding Domestic Violence Charges in Michigan

Understanding the legal landscape surrounding domestic violence charges in Michigan is crucial, as the justice system in the state takes a notably aggressive stance in arresting and prosecuting individuals accused of domestic assault. Here are key aspects highlighting Michigan’s assertiveness in prosecuting these charges:

Immediate Arrests

Unlike many other cases where the police typically require an arrest warrant authorized by a judge or magistrate, domestic violence charges follow a different protocol. Law enforcement can make an immediate arrest when they have reasonable cause to believe that an assault has occurred against a spouse. This expedited process underscores the seriousness with which domestic violence cases are treated.

Admissibility of Prior Convictions

In standard legal proceedings, prior convictions are often not admissible as evidence to prove guilt. However, a noteworthy exception exists for domestic violence convictions. Michigan law permits prior domestic violence convictions to be more freely admitted in court, further emphasizing the unique nature of these cases.

Varied Penalties

While Assault and Battery charges typically carry a penalty of 93 days in jail, domestic violence cases introduce additional complexity. Penalties escalate based on the number of prior convictions a defendant has for domestic violence. This means that individuals with a history of such convictions may face more severe consequences, highlighting the importance of robust legal defense.

Navigating domestic violence charges in Michigan requires a comprehensive understanding of the legal nuances and intricacies specific to these cases. To safeguard your rights and mount a solid defense, it is imperative to consult with experienced legal counsel who can provide expert guidance tailored to your unique situation. At John Engman & Associates, P.C., we specialize in domestic violence defense and are here to protect your interests and advocate for the best possible outcome in your case.

Dealing with False Domestic Violence Charges

When you or a loved one find yourselves entangled in the complex web of false domestic violence accusations, swift action is paramount. Seeking expert criminal defense representation should be your immediate course of action. In Michigan, while there isn’t a mandatory arrest law in place, it’s crucial to understand that the police can still make an arrest later on, even after an initial altercation.

Navigating Bond Conditions and Home Restrictions in Domestic Violence Cases

In cases involving domestic violence charges, it’s important to understand the intricacies of bond conditions set by a district court judge. Typically, a no-contact order with the victim is a standard part of these conditions. If you happen to reside in the same household as the victim, returning home may be prohibited unless the judge decides otherwise.

No Contact Orders Explained: A crucial aspect to grasp is that a no-contact order is automatically imposed as part of your bond conditions, preventing any interaction with the victim. This is a standard safeguard put in place to ensure the safety and well-being of all parties involved.

Exploring Options: However, if the accuser is willing to allow you to return home and is comfortable with it, it is imperative to inform your attorney promptly. Your attorney can then petition the judge to reconsider the bond conditions. Should the judge choose not to modify these conditions, it is strongly advised against returning home.

Compliance is Important: It’s vital to recognize that when a judge issues specific instructions as part of your bond conditions, compliance is of utmost importance. Violating these conditions can have serious repercussions, potentially leading to your incarceration. Therefore, unless the judge officially modifies the conditions, it is essential to adhere to the directives provided by the court.

In situations involving domestic violence charges, legal counsel plays a pivotal role in navigating these complexities. Your domestic violence attorney’s role is not only to advocate for your rights but also to ensure that you are fully informed about the legal implications of your actions. Always remember that the guidance of a skilled criminal attorney can make all the difference in the outcome of your case.

Grand Rapids Domestic Violence Attorneys

Domestic violence charges are serious charges, and you need to protect yourself by contacting the best Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We will listen to your story, and our legal team will create the best defense strategy we can for you.   

We are here to help our victims get the help they need to protect themselves, including PPOs – personal protection orders. So don’t hesitate to make that call; your case is urgent and serious. Call John Engman & Associates today.

Our Domestic Violence Defense attorneys will fight hard to protect your freedom, reputation, and future. To request a consultation with one of our Domestic Violence Defense attorneys in Grand Rapids, MI, call John Engman & Associates, P.C. at (616) 454-5222.

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Call us today at (616) 4454-5222 and schedule a free initial consultation