Domestic Assault Laws in Virginia

December 20, 2021

Whenever they respond to domestic violence offenses, Virginia police officers are directed to make an arrest. Consulting a knowledgeable Virginia domestic abuse lawyer can be crucial to your situation if you’re facing accusations of domestic violence. To progress with the case, contact a VA domestic assault attorney at Rudolphi Law.

Probable Cause

In Virginia, there has to be a sufficient amount of probable cause. To be charged with domestic violence, a specific body of proof is required. There must be more than mere reasonable suspicion and slighter than proof beyond a reasonable doubt for someone to be charged with a crime of domestic violence in Virginia. In this state, determination comes from case law in the context of crime.

No set definition of reasonable fear of bodily injury, sexual assault, or death exists for domestic violence arrests in Virginia, but rather the totality of the actions taken by the accused.

Domestic violence cases frequently end up in court. Therefore, you must have a skilled domestic assault lawyer, VA assisting you throughout the proceedings.

How Domestic Violence Arrests Differ

When someone gets arrested for domestic violence, an emergency protective order is usually issued. Afterward, the Court generally issues a preliminary protective order if someone gets arrested for domestic violence and if the complainant requests it until a full hearing can be had.

The emergency protective order will last for 72 hours. The preliminary protective order usually lasts a couple of weeks and goes until a full hearing is had on the issue of a full protective order. A protective order can be issued for up to 2 years.  

What Happens After an Arrest?

Police in Virginia will bring domestic violence suspects after arresting them to the station and in front of the magistrate. The police officer will clarify the situations of domestic violence charges, provide relevant information, and have the magistrate decide if probable cause exists to hold this person for domestic violence.

If the magistrate finds probable cause for the domestic violence arrest, they will issue a warrant for the arrestee. It’s crucial at this point to have a domestic abuse attorney Virginia. At this stage, they can give or deny bonds depending on the severity of the charge, the individual’s prior record, and most essential, the person’s likelihood to show up. 

The person arrested may be released on bond if one is issued. If not, then the person’s attorney will need to file for a bond. The accused will be held in jail until a judicial officer sets a bond or conditional release.

An individual who admits to shoving or grabbing another person’s who is a family or household member may be found guilty of domestic assault. Admitting to domestic violence charges makes a prosecutor’s case easier to prove. Therefore, it is very important that the accused not make any statements to law enforcement.

How a Lawyer Can Assist You

Law enforcement officials will use a domestic violence arrestee’s statements made to police during or following their arrest in court. Sadly, this is the reality in these situations. After a domestic violence arrest in Virginia, the more a person talks to the police, the more their words can be used against them by the police.

When confronted by the police, it is better to remain silent and avoid answering any questions. It is best to ask a domestic assault lawyer VA at Rudolphi Law and clearly invoke your right to counsel. A domestic abuse attorney VA can help you determine what information should and should not be given to the police when they’re uncertain.

People can easily make statements inadvertently or explain themselves to the police and, in reality, admit to something that is a technical crime. Therefore, especially in situations involving assault and battery, individuals should consider having someone by their side as soon as they get arrested.