Manchester Domestic Violence Lawyer
Experienced Defense Against Domestic Violence Charges in Hillsborough County
Domestic violence covers acts of simple assault, criminal restraint, criminal threatening, harassment, violating a restraining order or order of protection, or criminal mischief. These allegations involve spouses, ex-spouses, household members, relatives, or current or former romantic partners. When your reputation and future are on the line, you must proceed with your case with an experienced legal representative.
At George T. Campbell, Attorney at Law, I bring more than two decades of trial experience to every criminal defense case I take on. I know how the state of New Hampshire pursues convictions against the accused and what can be done to ensure that any shortcomings in the prosecution's case are exposed adequately before the court. If you have been charged with domestic violence, the time to take action is now.
Are you facing a domestic violence charge in New Hampshire? Call George T. Campbell, Attorney at Law today at (603) 787-5364or contact us onlineto schedule a meeting with our domestic violence attorney in Manchester!
What are New Hampshire's Domestic Violence Definitions?
In New Hampshire, domestic violence is defined as the occurrence of one or more of the following acts committed by a family or household member against another family or household member:
- Assault: The intentional, knowing, or reckless causing of bodily injury, or the attempt to cause bodily injury, to another person.
- Reckless conduct: Conduct that places another person in danger of serious bodily injury.
- Criminal threatening: The communication of a threat to commit any crime resulting in bodily injury to another person.
- Sexual assault: Any unwanted sexual contact, including rape, attempted rape, and other forms of sexual assault.
- Stalking: The repeated following, harassing, or threatening behavior that would cause a reasonable person to fear for their safety or the safety of their family members.
- Interference with freedom: The intentional interference with another person's freedom, including taking or withholding a person's personal property or interfering with their access to transportation or communication.
These acts are considered domestic violence when committed against a family or household member, which includes current or former spouses, domestic partners, parents, children, siblings, and individuals who are or were in a dating relationship. It is important to note that domestic violence can take many different forms and can involve physical, emotional, or financial abuse.
What are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in New Hampshire?
Domestic violence is a serious crime in New Hampshire, and its penalties can be severe. The penalties for domestic violence in New Hampshire depend on the case's specific circumstances, such as the severity of the offense, whether there are any prior convictions, and whether any injuries were sustained.
Here are some possible penalties for domestic violence in New Hampshire:
- Class A misdemeanor: A person who commits a simple assault against a family or household member may be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. The penalty for this offense may include a fine of up to $2,000 and/or up to one year in jail.
- Class B felony: If a person causes serious bodily injury to a family or household member, they may be charged with a Class B felony. The penalty for this offense may include a fine of up to $4,000 and/or up to seven years in prison.
- Enhanced penalty: If the offender has two or more prior domestic violence convictions within the past ten years, they may be subject to enhanced penalties. For example, a person who commits a simple assault against a family or household member and has two or more prior domestic violence convictions may be charged with a Class B felony, which carries a penalty of up to seven years in prison and/or a fine of up to $4,000.
- Protective order: In addition to criminal penalties, a court may issue a protective order against the offender, including provisions such as prohibiting the offender from having contact with the victim or entering the victim's residence.
It's worth noting that New Hampshire takes domestic violence seriously and has a mandatory arrest law. This means that if law enforcement officers have probable cause to believe that domestic violence has occurred, they must make an arrest, regardless of whether the victim wants to press charges.
Can The Victim Drop Domestic Violence Charges in New Hampshire?
In New Hampshire, the decision to drop domestic violence charges ultimately rests with the prosecutor handling the case, not the victim. This means that even if a victim of domestic violence requests that the charges be dropped, the prosecutor may still choose to pursue the case.
Under New Hampshire law, domestic violence is considered a crime against the state, not just the individual victim. This means the prosecutor can pursue charges even if the victim does not cooperate or wishes to drop the charges.
However, the victim's wishes and cooperation can still impact the case. If the victim is unwilling to testify or provide other evidence, the prosecutor's case may be weakened, making it more difficult to secure a conviction. On the other hand, if the victim is willing to testify and provides strong evidence, it may increase the likelihood of a conviction and a more severe penalty for the offender.
Defenses to Domestic Violence Charges
A few defenses can be used in response to domestic violence charges in New Hampshire. It's important to note that each case is unique, and the appropriate defense will depend on the case's specific circumstances.
Here are some common defenses to domestic violence charges:
- Self-defense: If the defendant acted in self-defense, they may be able to argue that their actions were necessary to protect themselves from harm.
- Lack of intent: If the defendant did not intend to commit domestic violence, they may be able to argue that the alleged offense was a mistake or accident.
- False allegations: Sometimes, a victim may make false allegations of domestic violence. If the defendant can show that the allegations were fabricated, they may be able to avoid conviction.
- Consent: If the alleged victim consented to the behavior in question, the defendant may be able to argue that they did not commit domestic violence.
- Alibi: If the defendant can provide evidence that they were not present when the alleged offense occurred, they may be able to refute the charges.
Some defenses, such as self-defense or lack of intent, may require the defendant to provide evidence to support their claim. In addition, the success of a defense will depend on the strength of the prosecution's case and the evidence presented by both sides.
Contact Our Manchester Domestic Violence Attorney Today
Whether you have been falsely accused or your charge results from a momentary lapse of judgment, I am prepared to work for you and do everything I can to restore your reputation. It is possible to seek favorable outcomes in these emotional cases and ensure that your domestic violence charge has as little impact as possible on your life with a domestic violence defense lawyer on your side.
Contact George T. Campbell, Attorney at Law, today to schedule a FREE consultation with our domestic violence lawyer in Manchester!