Difference Between Assault and Domestic Assault in Darien
A person commits assault when they intentionally cause a physical injury to another person. Domestic violence is any event that causes physical injury or the fear of physical injury between family members or household members. The difference between assault and domestic violence in Darien is that there does not actually have to be a physical injury to be charged with domestic violence. There could be the fear of physical injury with domestic violence. However, an assault charge requires a physical injury to have taken place. It is important to work with a qualified domestic assault attorney who has experience in assault cases and can help you defend your charges.
Elements of Domestic Assault
A person can be charged with both crimes if they commit an assault in a domestic situation. If there is an argument in a home and one person causes a physical injury to another person, they can be charged with disorderly conduct, which would be a domestic violence crime, and assault.
One of the main differences between domestic violence and assault cases in Darien is that domestic violence cases are generally treated more seriously than assault cases, depending on the facts of the case. Domestic violence is between people who have a familial relationship and are more likely to continue their relationship after the case is over. The court looks to rehabilitate the arrested person to make sure that there are no further incidents of domestic violence. In assault cases, the court does not work to rehabilitate any relationship. They may focus on anger management for the defendant, but there is no focus on a spouse or family relationship.
Distinctions Between Charges
The main distinction between assault and domestic violence is that assault can happen in any place and it does not need to be a domestic situation. It can happen between complete strangers. Domestic violence always involves people who have a close relationship.
Domestic violence and assault are charged differently as well in Darien. When an assault takes place outside of a home, it is charged differently than domestic violence as it is thought of similarly because of the physical injury element.
Penalties and Consequences
Most domestic violence charges are misdemeanor charges such as disorderly conduct or breach of peace. Assault charges differ from domestic violence charges in Darien because they are more serious. Assault in the third degree is the least serious assault charge – it is a misdemeanor. Any assault greater than that is a felony in Connecticut.
The long-term consequences differ because an assault charge is not likely to result in a protective order being put in place so there is no violation of protective order consequence. An assault charge carries heavier consequences depending on the type of assault, so there can be a longer period of time in jail. The charges differ entirely because the domestic violence charge with a protective order can keep someone from their home in the long term up to two years.
Changes in Defense Strategies
Darien domestic violence defense lawyers use different defense strategies for domestic violence and assault charges. An assault charge requires a physical injury, so the Darien lawyer determines whether that injury occurred and will usually work to find proof that there was no injury – if that proof exists. They also verify whether the injury is as serious as the alleged victim claims.
A domestic violence charge does not require a physical injury. There could just be the fear of physical injury. For that reason, proof of an injury is not a defense for domestic violence cases. It is important to work with a skilled attorney who has experience in a variety of cases can help determine the proper defense needed for their client’s charge.