Domestic violence is one of the most common forms of violence in the United States. Many people think that their relationships are immune, but violence can happen to people of all backgrounds. By legal definitions in Illinois, domestic battery is the charge when someone causes bodily harm to another member of the household. This harm must be knowingly made, and it must be without legal justification. To clarify, the harm does not have to come to a family member. Anyone who is living in the house qualifies. This harm must include physical contact with the intention to insult or provoke.
Domestic battery is inherently a misdemeanor charge, which makes it less serious. However, in some cases, domestic battery can be elevated to a felony charge. A felony has more serious repercussions. One of the more common advanced charges is known as aggravated domestic battery.
Aggravated domestic battery also involves situations when bodily harm is inflicted on a household member. However, in order for the crime to be aggravated, several additional conditions must be met. Aggravated domestic battery involves violence that causes significant bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement. This means that the injuries incurred are more substantial than in a normal domestic battery case.
Illinois law then specifies that strangulation is considered aggravated domestic battery. Strangulation is defined as intentionally limiting the other person’s ability to breathe. This can also include limiting the circulation of blood to the brain. Strangulation can be caused by applying pressure to the neck or throat. Alternatively, it can be caused by blocking the nose or mouth.
Because aggravated domestic battery is a more serious offense, the sentencing is more serious as well. As a felony, someone convicted of aggravated domestic battery faces much stiffer penalties. Individuals convicted of this charge must serve a mandatory term in prison of at least 60 days. If this is a second offense, the mandatory imprisonment is even longer. Normal prison terms for aggravated domestic battery are between three and seven years. However, extended terms may be used in some cases. These terms are at least seven years in length. The maximum sentence is 14 years. Probation and other conditional discharges may be considered in some cases. However, the minimum prison terms must be met before probation is considered.
Someone convicted of aggravated domestic battery may be stripped of his or her right to bear arms. This means that the individual may no longer be able to legally own, possess, transport, ship or receive a firearm. This would also cover ammunition. This stipulation was incorporated after the Gun Control Act of 1968, which is federal legislation. If the conviction results in a loss of this right, it will be noted during the court proceedings. It will be explained orally or in writing with significant weight. Official notification will be added to the court file for record keeping purposes.
Aggravated domestic battery is a charge that can change your life. Get legal support you trust with Spodek Law Group today.
In Illinois, the relationship of the victim, also termed the petitioner, to the perpetrator, known as the respondent, matters when determining what kind of protection order to apply. When the respondent is a family member, a resident of the same household, a spouse or a someone who the petitioner is dating or has dated in the past, then the type of order that will be issued is known as an Order of Protection.
Other types of court orders that restrain the behaviors of individuals who are menacing an Illinois resident include Civil No Contact Orders as well as Stalking Orders. However, these latter orders are used where the petitioner and respondent have no current or past domestic relationship. Because of the potential severity and high risk of escalation to actual violence, domestic situations in the state of Illinois are given their own special class of restraining order.
What are Orders of Protection for?
Domestic abuse is a serious problem in the state of Illinois because it is so often a precursor to serious domestic violence and even death. For this reason, Illinois state law gives judges wide latitude to restrain the behaviors of abusive partners who put children and spouses or significant others at risk of harm.
The main goal of an Order of Protection is to stop ongoing abusive or violent acts and to prevent such acts from recurring in the future. Orders of Protection usually center around injunctions for the respondent against making any physical contact with the petitioner. This is often carefully defined in terms of actual distance as measured in feet, usually prohibiting the respondent from willfully coming within 50 to 100 feet of the petitioner.
Orders of Protection may also include restrictions beyond just avoiding physical contact. Many Orders of Protection include prohibitions against the respondent contacting the petitioner by telephone, email, written notes, social media or even third parties. They may prohibit the respondent from coming near the petitioner’s school, home or work even when the petitioner is not present in those places. They may also include orders to return or stay away from property or pets.
In a few more serious cases, Orders of Protection may even mandate the respondent to move out of a residence that they cohabit with the petitioner. In some cases, this may even include removing the respondent from a home that they own. Respondents may also be ordered to pay child support or attend counseling.
Orders of Protection often ensnare the innocent
Because of the severe and well-publicized consequences of domestic violence, Illinois courts reflexively favor victims of domestic abuse. While the system that has sprung up to defend victims of domestic violence has generally done more good than harm, innocent people are still sometimes trapped by the draconian and life-altering terms that Orders of Protection often entail.
If you have been targeted by an unfair or outright malicious Order of Protection, please contact the Spodek Law Group. We can help you achieve the best outcome in your case.