New Canaan Second-Degree Harassment Lawyer
The Connecticut second-degree harassment statute can be easy to violate, but top criminal defense attorneys know strategies to fight the charges. Working with a New Canaan second-degree harassment lawyer right from the start can help you protect your rights, avoid costly mistakes, and achieve a positive outcome.
How Can Second-Degree Harassment Complicate a Domestic Affair?
If a charge of harassment in the second degree arises from a dispute with relatives or housemates or a disagreement between romantic partners, it is important to be aware of potential complicating factors. Crimes that occur between people considered to be “family or household members” under Connecticut General Statutes (C.G.S.) §46b-38a may be treated as domestic violence offenses with consequences that extend beyond those in traditional cases.
Can a Charge Be Affected by Protective Orders?
One particular area of concern is the need to watch for the imposition of protective orders. These orders may be issued by a criminal court when charges are filed or one party to the dispute may request an order from a civil court. Protective orders could prohibit all communication between parties, or they may only restrict certain contact or actions. Violation of these orders can be a separate and additional criminal offense.
What Are the Consequences of Violating a Protective Order?
If a protective order has been issued, it is critical to understand and abide by the terms because violating a protective order is a felony offense. A second-degree harassment lawyer in New Canaan could determine what is and is not allowed under an order to help avoid a criminal violation.
How Is Harassment Defined?
Harassment in the second degree is defined in C.G.S. §53a-183. The statute describes three types of conduct that constitute a violation. In two of these situations, an individual must act with the specific intent to harass, annoy, or alarm another person. However, you can also be convicted of second-degree harassment for using indecent or obscene language on the phone regardless of the intent behind the use of such language.
A second means of committing second-degree harassment occurs when someone acting with intent sends a written communication (electronically or by other means) in a way that is considered “likely to cause annoyance or alarm.” A New Canaan second-degree harassment attorney may be able to show that the words at issue were not likely to annoy or alarm the recipient.
What Are the Penalties for a Conviction?
Harassment in the second degree is a Class C misdemeanor. Those found guilty may be required to pay a fine of up to $500.
A court could also sentence a convicted individual to three months in jail. However, a defense attorney could seek alternative penalties whenever possible.
Contact a New Canaan Second-Degree Harassment Attorney
A New Canaan second-degree harassment lawyer can review your case to determine the best available strategies for fighting the charges. Moreover, a knowledgeable attorney can help you avoid saying or doing something that can be used against you or taking actions that could violate a protective order. Call Mark Sherman Law today for a consultation to learn how a defense lawyer can assist in your case.