Houston Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys

Domestic Violence

The phrase domestic violence typically applies to violent behavior committed against spouses or other family members. Crimes of domestic violence are generally referred to as family violence or dating violence in the Texas Family Code. Police officers responding to domestic violence calls will usually be placing one person under arrest as a matter of course. In some cases, an individual may be arrested as the result of accusations that are exaggerated or completely fabricated. If you were arrested for domestic violence anywhere in Harris County, it is in your best interest to not make any statement to authorities until you have legal representation. You should contact The Gonzalez Law Group as soon as possible.

Overview of Domestic Violence in Texas

Types of Domestic Violence Offenses in Texas

Certain crimes are considered domestic violence offenses because of the alleged victims involved or the settings in which the incidents took place. The nature of the criminal charges in these cases can depend on multiple factors, including the degree of injuries alleged victims suffer and the prior criminal record of the alleged offender.

Common examples of domestic violence offenses that people are accused of in the Houston area include, but are not limited to:

  • Continuous Violence Against the Family;
  • Child Abuse;
  • Kidnapping;
  • Domestic Assault;
  • Assault with Strangulation;
  • Stalking;
  • Protective Order Hearings; and
  • Violation of Protective Order.

Domestic Violence Definitions in Texas

Texas defines family violence, commonly referred to as domestic violence, as an act by a member of a family or household against another member of the family or household that;

  • is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault; or
  • that is a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault, but does not include defensive measures to protect oneself;

Penalties for domestic violence in Texas range from a misdemeanor with a penalty of up to a year in prison to a first-degree felony with a penalty of between 5 and 99 years in prison. Below are some definitions that might help contextualize who the law is meant to protect.

  • Family — Includes individuals related by consanguinity (blood relatives) or affinity (they are married to each other or the spouse of one of the individuals is related by consanguinity to the other individual), individuals who are former spouses of each other, individuals who are the parents of the same child, without regard to marriage, and a foster child and foster parent, without regard to whether those individuals reside together.
  • Household — A unit composed of persons living together in the same dwelling, without regard to whether they are related to each other.
  • Member of a Household — Includes a person who previously lived in a household.
  • Dating Violence — An act, other than a defensive measure to protect oneself, by an alleged offender that is committed against an alleged victim or applicant for a protective order with whom the alleged offender has or has had;
    • a dating relationship, or because of the alleged victim’s or applicant’s marriage to or dating relationship with an individual with whom the alleged offender is or has been in a dating relationship or marriage; and
    • is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault; or
    • that is a threat that reasonably places the victim or applicant in fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault.
    • For the purposes of this statute, a dating relationship means a relationship between individuals who have or have had a continuing relationship of a romantic or intimate nature, with the existence of such relationships determined based on consideration of the length of the relationship, the nature of the relationship, and the frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.

Harris County Domestic Violence Resources

Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse (AVDA) | Family Violence Prevention and Safety Advocates in Houston —AVDA is a nonprofit organization with the mission “to end family violence by advocating for the safety and self-determination of victims, promoting accountability for abusers and fostering a community response to abuse.” Visit this website to learn more about the organization’s victim advocacy, counseling, and outreach services. You can also find information about upcoming events and access a 2016 annual report.

1001 Texas Ave., Suite 600
Houston, TX 77002
(713) 224-9911

Houston Area Women’s Center (HAWC) — HAWC identifies itself as Houston’s largest nonprofit support services for domestic violence and sexual assault. On this website, you can learn more about HAWC’s history, mission, and financials. You can also find answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) as well as information about shelter, counseling, and advocacy.

Houston Area Women’s Center
1010 Waugh Dr.
Houston, TX 77019
(713) 528-6798

Contact Domestic Violence Defense Lawyers in Houston, TX

Were you arrested for domestic violence in Southeast Texas? Do not say anything to authorities without first contacting The Gonzalez Law Group. Our Houston criminal defense attorneys represent individuals in communities in the greater Harris County area including Pearland, Baytown, Seabrook, La Porte, Pasadena, Galena Park, Friendswood, and many others. Call (832) 530-4070 or complete an online contact form to have our lawyers review your case and discuss all of your legal options during a free, confidential consultation.

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