Common Domestic Violence Charges in Cincinnati, OH
Choosing a criminal defense lawyer may seem hard, but our lawyers and legal team are ready and willing to come to your defense. With thousands of criminal cases under our belt, our team at the award-winning Joslyn Law Firm can handle your case from start to finish. Common domestic violence charges, like other criminal charges, can be intimidating to fight. The nuances of the law make criminal defense cases tricky for the average person to handle.
Our dedicated lawyers are part of the award-winning Joslyn Law Firm, and they know what’s at stake with your domestic violence charges. Our commitment to criminal defense drives us to search for strong defenses and protect your life and your rights. Our lead lawyer, Brian Joslyn, has earned awards for his work in the field of criminal defense and his commitment to client satisfaction. Some awards include Columbus CEO Magazine’s Top Lawyers of 2015, a lifetime charter membership to the Best Attorneys of America in 2016, and was a Rising Star Selectee in 2017.
Here at Joslyn law Firm, we know how to navigate these laws and work on a defense that is in your best interests. Let our compassionate team use their experience to help you fight these domestic violence charges.
A Domestic Violence Lawyer Can Handle Related Offenses in Cincinnati, OH
Do you think that you may be under investigation, or were you already arrested in Hamilton County for any kind of domestic violence-related crime? Domestic violence charges are serious and can impact multiple facets of your life. Your reputation and your freedom are on the line, but a lawyer with Joslyn Law Firm is not afraid to come to your defense.
Many of the offenses related to domestic violence carry extremely harsh penalties that include lengthy terms of incarceration and significant fines. These charges can impact multiple aspects of your life well beyond incarceration.
Brian Joslyn is a criminal defense attorney in Cincinnati who represents clients in Norwood, Springdale, Sycamore, Anderson, Bridgetown, Delhi, Green, Harrison, Miamitown, and the surrounding areas in southwest Ohio. We have handled 20,000 cases and won several awards in the industry. We know what to do when you bring a domestic violence case to us.
There are many nuances in the law and different charges you may face. Our lawyers are prepared to handle any of these charges and any questions you may have about domestic violence law and your potential criminal charges. Our goal is to have your domestic violence charge dropped, reduced, or dismissed. Call our firm today at (513) 399-6289 to get started on your case.
Cincinnati Common Domestic Violence Charges Information Center
- Domestic Assault Crimes in Cincinnati
- Sexual Domestic Violence Crimes in Cincinnati
- Domestic Trespassing Offenses in Cincinnati
- Resources for Domestic Violence and Related Offenses in Cincinnati
- Domestic Violence News in Cincinnati, Ohio
- Common Domestic Violence Questions and Answers
- Cincinnati, OH Domestic Violence and Related Offenses Lawyer
Domestic Assault Crimes in Cincinnati
Assaults accounted for 94.9% of all domestic violence offenses in 2015, according to the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services. Assault offenses are some of the most commonly charged criminal offenses in domestic violence disputes because an alleged offender does not need to have necessarily harmed the alleged victim in order to constitute a crime. You may be charged with assault, even if an alleged altercation did not involve physical contact. Under Ohio Revised Code § 2919.25, a person can be charged with a domestic violence crime if he or she:
- Knowingly causes or attempts to cause bodily harm to household members or family members.
- Recklessly causes serious bodily harm to a family or household member; or
- By threat of force, knowingly causes a family or household member to believe that they could face imminent bodily harm.
Ohio has three degrees of assault crimes that may be considered domestic violence offenses:
Assault in Cincinnati
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2903.13, an alleged offender commits assault if he or she:
- Knowingly causes or attempts to cause physical harm to another or to another’s unborn child; or
- Recklessly causes serious physical harm to another or to another’s unborn child.
Ohio Revised Code § 2901.01(A)(4) defines physical harm as “any injury, illness, or other physiological impairment, regardless of its gravity or duration.” Commonly referred to as “simple assault,” a basic domestic assault offense is generally a first-degree misdemeanor wherein someone could face up to six months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
Aggravated Assault in Cincinnati
Ohio Revised Code § 2903.12 defines aggravated assault when an alleged offender, while under the influence of sudden passion or in a sudden fit of rage, knowingly:
- Causes serious physical harm to another or to another’s unborn child; or
- Causes or attempts to cause bodily harm to another or to another’s unborn child by means of a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance.
A dangerous ordnance is defined under Ohio Revised Code § 2923.11 as any of the following:
- Any automatic or sawed-off firearm, zip-gun, or ballistic knife;
- Any explosive or incendiary device;
- Nitroglycerin, nitrocellulose, nitrostarch, PETN, cyclonite, TNT, picric acid, and other high explosives; amatol, tritonal, tetrytol, pentolite, pecretol, cyclotol, and other high explosive compositions; plastic explosives; dynamite, blasting gelatin, gelatin dynamite, sensitized ammonium nitrate, liquid-oxygen blasting explosives, blasting powder, and other blasting agents; and any other explosive substance having sufficient brisance or power to be particularly suitable for use as a military explosive, or for use in mining, quarrying, excavating, or demolitions;
- Any firearm, rocket launcher, mortar, artillery piece, grenade, mine, bomb, torpedo, or similar weapon, designed and manufactured for military purposes, and the ammunition for that weapon;
- Any firearm muffler or suppressor; or
- Any combination of parts that is intended by the owner for use in converting any firearm or other device into a dangerous ordnance.
Serious physical harm is defined under Ohio Revised Code § 2901.01(A)(5) as any of the following:
- Any mental illness or condition of such gravity that would normally require hospitalization or prolonged psychiatric treatment;
- Any physical harm that carries a substantial risk of death;
- Any physical harm that involves some permanent incapacity, whether partial or total, or that involves some temporary, substantial incapacity;
- Any physical harm that involves some permanent disfigurement or that involves some temporary, serious disfigurement; or
- Any physical harm that involves acute pain of such duration as to result in substantial suffering or that involves any degree of prolonged or intractable pain.
Aggravated assault is a fourth-degree felony punishable by up to 18 months in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
Felonious Assault in Cincinnati
- Causes serious bodily harm to another or to another’s unborn child;
- Causes or attempts to cause physical harm to another or to another’s unborn child by means of a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance.
Alleged offenders can also be charged with this crime if they, with knowledge, had tested positive for a virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and knowingly do any of the following:
- Engage in sexual conduct with another person without disclosing that knowledge to the other person prior to engaging in sexual conduct;
- Engage in sexual conduct with an individual whom the offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe lacks the mental capacity to appreciate the significance of the knowledge that the offender has tested positive as a carrier of a virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome; or
- Engage in sexual conduct with a person under 18 years of age who is not the spouse of the offender.
Felonious assault is a second-degree felony punishable by up to eight years in prison and/or a fine of up to $15,000.
Sexual Domestic Violence Crimes in Cincinnati
Some of the most common domestic violence sex offenses include:
Sexual Imposition in Cincinnati
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.06, an alleged offender commits sexual imposition if he or she has sexual contact with another person (not a spouse), causes another person (not a spouse) to have sexual contact with the alleged offender, or causes two or more other persons to have sexual contact when any of the following applies:
- The alleged offender knows that the sexual contact is offensive to the other person, or one of the other persons, or is reckless in that regard.
- The alleged offender knows that the other person’s, or one of the other person’s, ability to appraise the nature of or control the offender’s or touching person’s conduct is substantially impaired.
- The alleged offender knows that the other person, or one of the other persons, submits and is unaware of the sexual contact.
- The other person, or one of the other persons, is 13 years of age or older but less than 16 years of age, whether or not the alleged offender knows the age of such person, and the alleged offender is at least 18 years of age and four or more years older than such other person.
- The alleged offender is a mental health professional, the other person or one of the other persons is a mental health client or patient of the alleged offender, and the alleged offender induces the other person who is the client or patient to submit by falsely representing to the other individual who is the client or patient that the sexual contact is necessary for mental health treatment purposes.
A first offense of sexual imposition is a third-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500. If an alleged offender has been previously convicted of sexual imposition or an enumerated sexual offense, then any subsequent sexual imposition offense is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
Sexual Battery in Cincinnati
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.03, an alleged offender commits sexual battery if he or she engages in sexual conduct with another person (not a spouse) when any of the following apply:
- The alleged offender knowingly coerces the other individual to submit by any means that would prevent resistance by an individual of ordinary resolution.
- The alleged offender knows that the other person’s ability to appraise the nature of or control the other person’s own conduct is substantially impaired.
- The alleged offender knows that the other person submits because the other individual is unaware that the act is being committed.
- The alleged offender knows that the other person submits because the other person mistakenly identifies the offender as the other person’s spouse.
- The alleged offender is the other person’s natural or adoptive parent, or a stepparent, or guardian, custodian, or person in loco parentis of the other person.
- The other individual is in custody or a patient in a hospital or other institution, and the alleged offender has supervisory or disciplinary authority over the other person.
- The alleged offender is a teacher, administrator, coach, or another person in authority employed by or serving in a school for which the state board of education prescribes minimum standards, the other person is enrolled in or attends that school, and the offender is not enrolled in and does not attend that school.
- The other person is a minor, and the alleged offender is a teacher, administrator, coach, or other person in authority employed by or serving in an institution of higher education, and the other person is enrolled in or attends that institution.
- The other person is a minor, and the alleged offender is the other person’s athletic or another type of coach, is the other person’s instructor, is the leader of a scouting troop of which the other person is a member, or is a person with temporary or occasional disciplinary control over the other person.
- The alleged offender is a mental health professional, the other person is a mental health client or patient of the alleged offender, and the alleged offender induces the other person to submit by falsely representing to the other person that the sexual conduct is necessary for mental health treatment purposes.
- The other person is confined in a detention facility, and the alleged offender is an employee of that detention facility.
- The other person is a minor, the alleged offender is a cleric, and the other person is a member of, or attends, the church or congregation served by the cleric.
- The other person is a minor, the alleged offender is a peace officer, and the offender is more than two years older than the other person.
Sexual battery is generally a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000. If the alleged victim is less than 13 years of age, the offense becomes a second-degree felony punishable by up to eight years in prison and/or a fine of up to $15,000.
Rape Charges in Cincinnati
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.02, an alleged offender commits rape if he or she engages in sexual conduct with another person when the alleged offender purposely compels the other individual to submit by force or threat of force, or engages in sexual conduct with another person who is not the spouse of the offender or who is the spouse of the alleged offender but is living separate and apart from the offender when any of the following applies:
- For the purpose of preventing resistance, the alleged offender substantially impairs the other person’s judgment or control by administering any drug, intoxicant, or controlled substance to the other person surreptitiously or by force, threat of force, or deception.
- The other person is less than 13 years of age, whether or not the alleged offender knows the age of the other person.
- The other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the alleged offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age.
Rape is a first-degree felony punishable by up to 11 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $20,000.
Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor Charges in Cincinnati
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.04, an alleged offender commits unlawful sexual conduct with a minor if he or she is 18 years of age or older and engages in sexual conduct with another individual (not a spouse) when the alleged offender knows the other person is 13 years of age or older but less than 16 years of age, or the alleged offender is reckless in that regard.
Unlawful sexual conduct with a minor is generally a fourth-degree felony punishable by up to 18 months in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000. If, however, the alleged offender is less than four years older than the other person, the crime is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to half a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
When an alleged offender is 10 or more years older than the other person, the crime is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
Domestic Trespassing Offenses in Cincinnati
Aggravated trespass does not necessarily have to involve physical contact with an alleged victim but can involve fear of an alleged offender causing physical harm. Under Ohio Revised Code § 2911.211, an alleged offender commits aggravated trespass if he or she enters or remains on the land or premises of another person with the purpose to commit a misdemeanor on that property. The elements of this involve causing bodily harm to another person or causing another individual to believe that the alleged offender will cause physical harm to them.
Aggravated trespass is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000, according to Ohio Revised Code § 2929.24.
Resources for Domestic Violence and Related Offenses in Cincinnati
The Ohio Department of Mental Health funded this manual that takes a closer look at domestic violence victims’ experiences. The manual begins by discussing what trauma is, what makes domestic violence traumatic, and who is traumatized by it. You can learn more about understanding trauma, trauma-informed care best practices, and trauma-informed care protocols.
The United States Department of Justice funded this study that sought “to improve understanding of the conditions under which criminal sanctions do and do not reduce repeat violence between intimate partners.” You can learn more about how this study was conducted and the methodology that was used. You can also download various datasets, including codebooks and a user guide.
The ODVN offers resources to victims of domestic violence and training materials and sessions for people looking to get involved with helping victims of domestic violence. Some resources include links to shelters and other organizations that offer aid and resources.
The YWCA of Greater Cincinnati offers a variety of links and resources for anyone suffering with domestic or family violence, stalking, and sexual assault or trafficking. The YWCA has intervention services, shelters, and other resources for people trying to escape domestic violence. The YWCA also conducts training and education sessions for some of the issues championed by the organization.
The Court of Domestic Relations provides links to important documents that victims of domestic violence may need for protection orders and custody and other information about penalties for violation of protective orders. The Court has PDF and Word TMP versions of the forms, along with a link to community resources like shelters, hotlines, advocacy services, and financial assistance.
The Ohio FVPC is a program created by the Office of Criminal Justice Services that advocates for laws and policies to help victims of domestic violence. Committees within the organization support the goals and interests of the FVPC. This resource also offers brochures and other flyers to give victims resources for dealing with domestic violence. The FVPC also has links to local and federal resources.
This site offers a list of Ohio counties and their domestic violence shelters and the numbers you can call to reach them. There is also information on domestic violence, including research and legislative information.
Domestic Violence News in Cincinnati, Ohio
Pandemic Side Effect: Domestic Violence Spikes, Grows More Deadly: A July 2020 article from Cincinnati Enquirer reported that groups like Women Helping Women have seen an increase in domestic violence hotline calls and more reports from victims of worsening violence. Actions like stay-at-home orders and other official responses of the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated domestic violence issues, some of which were fatal to victims.
Guns Used in 75% of Domestic Violence Deaths in Ohio, Report Says: In a Dayton Daily News article, data collected by the Ohio Domestic Violence Network showed that domestic abusers killed 81 people in the previous year. Three-quarters of these cases involved a gun, and approximately 33 percent of these cases had perpetrators with prior charges of domestic violence.
Domestic Violence, Child Abuse Victims to Receive Help from New Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Team: The Prosecuting Attorney’s Office of Hamilton County formed a unit in April 2020 to combat domestic violence issues that women and children face in the county. This unit, Crimes of Violence Against Woman and Children Unit, has prosecutors and victim advocates working together to help victims as they deal with the aftermath of a domestic violence incident. This “vertical prosecution” method is an attempt to protect the victim during the investigation process.
Programs Aim to Help Those Experiencing Domestic Violence: In a story from Local12, the Cincinnati Police Department reported that seven women were killed in domestic violence incidents. The CPD has also implemented a response team called DVERT™ (Domestic Violence Enhanced Response Team) to help victims at the scene of the incident. This help may come in the form of relocation or transportation to get help after the incident. DVERT™ is a program that partners the CPD with Women Helping Women, an Ohio-based program that helps survivors of abuse.
Common Domestic Violence Charges Questions and Answers
Q: What Defenses Can I Use for a Domestic Violence Charge?
A: In a domestic violence case, you or your lawyer can try a couple of defenses to reduce or dismiss charges. Self defense is one potential avenue of defense, as Ohio Revised Code § 2901.05 established the parameters for using self defense as a way to push back against alleged abuse.
You can also attempt to show a lack of intent or evidence. A lack of intent argues that the alleged offender did not knowingly cause harm. Similarly, you or your criminal defense attorney can argue that without sufficient evidence proving the abuse, you cannot be charged with these crimes.
Q: Is Domestic Violence a Felony in Ohio?
A: Domestic violence can be a felony or a misdemeanor, it depends on the circumstances of each case. For instance, if the victim of domestic abuse was known to be pregnant at the time, the offender can face a felony charge. Prior convictions can result in felony charges as well.
Q: What Is Assault? Are There Different Kinds of Assault Charges?
A: Assault charges can be classified under four different categories per Ohio Revised Codes, but three of them are relevant to domestic violence charges: assault, felonious assault, and aggravated assault.
Assault involves recklessly or knowingly hurting someone or their unborn child or attempting to hurt someone.
Felonious assault involves the use of a deadly weapon when hurting or attempting to hurt someone or their unborn child. Aggravated assault involved these elements and also happens while the perpetrator is “under the influence of sudden passion or in a sudden fit of rage.”
Fines and prison time will vary based on the type of assault committed and other circumstances of the case.
Q: How Much Time in Jail or Prison Can I Face for Domestic Violence?
A: It depends on the charges. A standard assault charge may be classified as a misdemeanor of the first degree, but this will depend on the identity of the victim and any priors you may have.
For a first-degree misdemeanor, you may face up to 180 days (6 months) in jail.
Felonious assault charges, however, can face more severe penalties. A felonious assault charge can be a first- or second-degree felony. With a felony of the second degree, you may be facing two to eight years in prison.
Many factors surrounding your case will influence fines and prison or jail time.
Q: Can I Seek Custody of My Children with a Domestic Violence Conviction on My Record?
A: The Supreme Court of Ohio affirms that it is possible to retain custody of a child after a domestic violence conviction. However, if you are convicted of domestic violence, you may face challenges retaining custody of your children. You and your domestic violence attorney can argue that you are committed to your child’s wellbeing and safety. They can also assert that your domestic violence conviction is not a reflection on your role as a parent.
Q: Do I Need a Lawyer for My Domestic Violence Charges?
A: No, there is no legal requirement for you to retain a lawyer. However, a criminal charge or allegation is very serious and can be overwhelming to handle alone. There are many defense arguments that a lawyer could employ on your behalf.
You have a legal right to a lawyer, but you do not have to work with one. You should know that being convicted of domestic violence could seriously hamper your plans for the future, though. You do not have to walk into the courtroom alone. Lawyers can help you address your domestic violence charge.
Cincinnati, OH Domestic Violence and Related Offenses Lawyer
According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, “From 1994 to 2010, the overall rate of intimate partner violence in the United States declined by 64%, from 9.8 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older to 3.6 per 1,000.”
If you were arrested or believe that you could be under investigation for any kind of crime related to domestic violence, it is in your best interest to act quickly if you want to seek legal representation. Joslyn Law Firm aggressively defends clients all over southwest Ohio against these types of criminal charges.
Our Cincinnati domestic violence team will provide an evaluation of your case when you call (513) 399-6289. You can submit an online contact form today to schedule a free, confidential phone consultation.
We can discuss any questions you have about potential defenses to criminal charges, protection orders, or domestic violence charges in Ohio.
Cincinnati criminal defense attorney Brian Joslyn represents clients in Springfield, Symmes, Blue Ash, Colerain, Forest Park, Miami, Montgomery, Reading, and many other nearby communities. Being accused of domestic violence in Ohio does not have to be the end of your fight for justice. You can take the first step toward addressing your domestic violence offense today.