Domestic Violence With Strangulation in NV: Penalties, Jail Time, and Common Defenses

sad girl with Violence with strangle on background.

If you are charged with domestic violence by strangulation in Nevada, it is important to understand the penalties and common defenses that may be available to you. This charge can have a major impact on child custody and other rights, so it is crucial to be familiar with the Nevada laws and statutes that apply.

In this post, we’ll discuss the penalties for this charge as well as some common defenses against it. We’ll also go over some of the Nevada laws and statutes that pertain to this domestic violence charge.

What is Domestic Violence by Strangulation in Nevada?

NRS 200.481 (i) defines strangulation as “intentionally stopping or decreasing normal breathing or blood flow of another person by putting pressure on the throat or blocking airways, which could result in death in serious injury.”

Domestic violence by strangulation, then, is when you strangle someone you have a domestic relationship with which is defined as:

  1. Current or former spouse-domestic partner
  2. A minor child or stepchild living in the home
  3. A co-parent of a minor child
  4. Any relative by blood or marriage
  5. Any person living in the same home

Strangulation can be done by applying pressure to the neck with hands, arms, or other objects. It can also be done by blocking the nose or mouth so that the victim cannot breathe.

Note that this “choking” does not need to last for more than a second. A brief wringing of one’s neck counts as strangling.

In Lachance v. State, 321 P.3d 919, 130 Nev. Adv. Op. 29 (Nev. 2014), the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that placing your hands on someone’s collarbones and applying pressure is grounds for domestic battery with strangulation.

What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence by Strangulation?

According to NRS 200.481, punishment for domestic violence through strangulation can either be classified as a Category B or C felony, with punishments including:

  • Category B Felony: Prison time up to 15 years, and/or a fine up to $10,000, depending on the victim, whether the alleged offender is a parolee or probationer, and/or whether the strangulation was committed with a deadly weapon.
  • Category C Felony: Prison time from 1 to 5 years and a fine equal to or less than $10,000.

The specific criminal charges and potential penalties will vary depending upon the victim, whether the suspect already has a criminal background, and whether a deadly weapon was used.

Domestic violence strangulation can also lead to other criminal charges, including a charge of attempted murder.

Why BDV With Strangulation Has a Worse Penalty Than Simple Battery

In the state of Nevada, a simple domestic battery is classified as a misdemeanor. The penalties for this charge are up to six months in jail and/or a fine up to $1,000.

The increased penalties for domestic violence by strangulation reflect the fact that this crime is much more dangerous than simple domestic battery. Strangulation can easily lead to death, and even if the victim doesn’t die, they can suffer severe brain damage from lack of oxygen.

In addition, domestic violence by strangulation is often used as a way to assert power and control over the victim. The act itself is often more about control than it is about actual violence.

This is why many states, including Nevada, have enacted harsher penalties for domestic violence by strangulation.

What Are Some Common Defenses Against Domestic Violence by Strangulation Charges?

There are a few defenses that may be available to you if you’ve been charged with domestic violence by strangulation. These defenses include:


You may be able to claim self-defense if you can show that you reasonably believed that you were in danger of bodily harm and that the use of force was necessary to protect yourself.

However, it is important to note that self-defense is only available if you used an amount of force that was reasonably necessary under the circumstances and if you did not provoke the attack.

Additionally, self-defense cannot be used if you were the aggressor or if you could have safely retreated from the situation.


Another possible defense is that the strangulation occurred accidentally. This could happen if you were engaged in horseplay or some other type of wrestling and things got out of hand.

To successfully use this defense, you would need to show that there was no intent to restrict the victim’s airway or cause them any harm.

Lack of Evidence

In many cases, domestic violence by strangulation charges is based solely on the word of the victim. If there is no physical evidence or eyewitnesses to corroborate the victim’s story, this can make it difficult for prosecutors to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.

False Accusations

Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for domestic violence by strangulation charges to be based on false accusations. This can happen for a variety of reasons, such as the victim wanting to get revenge or to gain an advantage in a custody battle.

If you can provide evidence that the accuser has made false claims in the past or has a motive to lie about what happened, this can help undermine their credibility.

If you’ve been arrested and charged with domestic violence, you’re likely frightened, confused and don’t know where to turn. The Defenders are seasoned criminal defense attorneys who understand that each alleged crime has a unique set of circumstances surrounding it, and we are committed to thoroughly investigating each and every facet of the case to build the best defense possible. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our team today.

Can Records Be Sealed If I’m Convicted Of Domestic Violence By Strangulation?

If you are convicted of domestic violence by strangulation, the record may be sealed 10 years after the case ends. This means that the general public will not have access to your criminal record and you will not have to disclose your conviction on job applications or other documents.

If the case got dismissed, then there is no waiting period to petition for a record seal. This process often takes months and involves several steps and a lot of paperwork. It’s often best to retain experienced legal counsel to help you during this process.

Are there Any Immigration Consequences?

Immigration and Nationality Act states that any alien who at any time after admission is convicted of a crime of domestic violence, a crime of stalking, or a crime of child abuse, child neglect, or child abandonment is deportable.This applies regardless of how long the individual has resided in the United States with a visa or green card. In addition, it states that a violation of a protection order is a deportable offense.

Any court-issued injunction, temporary or permanent, issued to prevent domestic violence or threats is referred to as a protection order. Even in misdemeanor cases, protection orders are common in felony domestic abuse allegations because they accompany felony charges.

Charged with a Crime? Call The Defenders

If you have been charged with domestic violence by strangulation in Nevada, it is important to understand all of the potential penalties and defenses that may be available to you. This charge can have significant consequences for your rights and your future, so it is crucial to seek experienced legal representation as soon as possible.

Here’s how we can help:

  • Investigate your case to determine all facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged crime
  • Determine whether there was police error or misconduct, or you are being falsely accused
  • Go over the strengths and weaknesses of your case with you to give you an idea of how your case will stand up in court
  • Inform you of all the legal options available to you
  • Offer guidance, support and sound legal advice

The Defenders have your best interests in mind and will defend your case to the best of their ability. If you, or anyone you know, has been charged with domestic violence by strangulation, or any other crime in Nevada, call us today for a strategy session to discuss your case.

Practice Areas