A host of state and federal laws have been enacted to protect the victims of domestic violence and to punish alleged perpetrators. Law enforcement is required to respond swiftly and decisively whenever complaints of domestic violence are made.
Domestic violence, however, is a much more complicated issue than it appears, and the laws that have been enacted to protect the victims of domestic violence have many unintended and unforeseen consequences.
More often than not, the alleged perpetrator of domestic violence is the bread winner of the family. If he or she goes to jail, the family will be left without support. Realizing this, the alleged victim, often at the request of the alleged perpetrator, is asked not to press charges. Neither party realizes that, once the matter is turned over to the District Attorney, they lose control, and they do not get to decide whether the alleged perpetrator will be prosecuted. At that point, the family’s already poor financial situation is made significantly poorer by the literally thousands of dollars that the alleged perpetrator will have to spend on bail, hiring a criminal attorney, and paying resulting fines and penalties.
People accused of domestic violence must take the matter very seriously. Failing to do so can result in (i) jail time, (ii) a permanent blemish on the alleged perpetrator’s record that can adversely affect his or her employment and other opportunities for the rest of his or her life, (iii) the loss of the alleged perpetrator’s right to own, use, or even possess firearms, and (iv) a presumption that he or she is not entitled to custody of his or her children. Unfortunately, this latter presumption has resulted in numerous false allegations of domestic violence being made when custody is in dispute.
- Domestic violence is a much more complicated issue than it appears.
- The state and federal laws that have been enacted to deal with domestic violence have many unintended and unforeseen consequences.
- Often, if the alleged perpetrator of domestic violence goes to jail, the family is left with no financial resources.
- People accused of domestic violence must take the matter seriously. Failure to do so can result in jail time, the loss of his or her right to possess firearms, and the loss of his or her right to have custody of his or her children.