A Domestic Violence offense is based on the relationship between the defendant and victim.  The reasons for the designation do not depend on the seriousness of the offense. Indeed, people often ask why a charge is “by domestic violence” when there was no violence.  But, domestic violence itself is not a crime. Rather, it is a designation added to certain crimes.

A.R.S. § 13-3601(A) details the domestic violence eligible offenses. However, A.R.S. § 13-3601(A)(1)-(6) discusses the required circumstances to add the domestic violence designation.

Obvious Circumstances of Domestic Violence

Some of the more obvious circumstances where a charge may be “by domestic violence” include an offense occurring where any family relationship is present. It is not relevant in this situation as to whether the parties live together or not. Any family relationship includes grandparents and grandchildren, step-grandchildren, in-laws and court-ordered relationships. 

Also, an offense is “by domestic violence” if the parties have a child in common or one is impregnated by the other.  It may also include any present or past romantic relationship, even if the parties do not live together. However, this is dependent on certain factors such as: length and type of relationship; frequency of interaction; and whether the relationship has terminated.

Less Obvious Circumstances of Domestic Violence

There are some domestic violence situations many people do not appreciate.  One example is where two friends reside together as non-romantic roommates.  This is the most common situation where people ask why is this “domestic violence”?  The question is logical but if one looks at the intent of the Arizona legislature in relation to domestic violence offenses, it is clear the legislature is looking to protect any scenario people are living together.  

Huss Law can help you

A first-time misdemeanor offender in Arizona faces serious consequences.  A mere charge, short of a conviction, may cause a great deal of distress in a person’s life. This includes impacting a person’s job and living situation.

It is important to retain an experienced domestic violence attorney.  Jeremy Huss has 20 years’ experience handling Arizona domestic violence cases.  He has tried many domestic homicide trials as well as many non-death domestic violence cases.  Contact Huss Law for a Free Consultation.

Categories:: Domestic Violence