Domestic violence is a serious issue in Tennessee with significant consequences. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), 43 Tennesseans were murdered by intimate partners in 2014. Firearms were involved in 75 percent of these homicides. Tennessee law enforcement received 74,023 reports of domestic violence crimes, but many also went unreported. There were 463 intimate partner abductions, and approximately half of all forcible rapes reported to law enforcement in 2014 were perpetrated by intimate partners. In Tennessee, intimate partner violence accounts for 15 percent of all violent crime, and one in three women and one in four men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.
The NCADV defines domestic violence as, “the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, threats, and emotional abuse.”
Domestic assault includes assault against a victim who is a member of the aggressor’s family or household including:
- The current or former spouse of the defendant
- A current or former domestic partner, roommate or person with whom the defendant had a sexual relationship
- Blood relative of the defendant
- Relative by marriage
- An adult or minor child or a member of the defendant’s household
Penalties for a domestic violence conviction
In Tennessee, domestic assault is a Class A Misdemeanor. The maximum jail sentence for a Class A Misdemeanor is 11 months 29 days in jail and a $200 fine. A person who is convicted of domestic assault will also be required to surrender any firearms in their possession.
The defendant may also be required to complete a drug or alcohol treatment program, or a counseling program that addresses violence and control issues and a batterer’s intervention program. A domestic assault conviction cannot be expunged from the defendant’s criminal record.
See TN Code § 39-13-111 (2015) for more information.
Additional consequences of a domestic assault conviction
In addition to the criminal penalties for a domestic violence conviction, there are other consequences that will have a negative impact in the defendant’s life, including the inability to own any kind of firearm. A domestic violence conviction can cause the defendant to lose their employment, and have great difficulty finding a new job if it requires a criminal background check. A person with a DV conviction cannot run for public office, and they will have trouble renting an apartment. If you have any questions about the consequences of domestic violence or assault, you are welcome to speak to a criminal defense attorney at the Law Offices of Adrian H. Altshuler & Associates.
Domestic abuse is a serious charge with far-reaching consequences if you should get convicted. You will need an aggressive Franklin criminal defense attorney to protect your rights if you are accused of domestic violence. You may contact the Law Offices of Adrian H. Altshuler & Associates today at 615-977-9370. We also have offices in Brentwood and Columbia to serve you.