Five Things You Need to Know About Battery Domestic Violence in Nevada

If you have been charged or arrested for battery domestic violence in Nevada, you know how seriously the Nevada law takes these crimes. The Law enforcement and prosecutors will aggressively fight this charge to get you arrested. However, if you get charged with battery domestic violence, that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be convicted. There are specific ways that you can defend yourself and protect your rights.

1) Battery Domestic Violence in Nevada

According to the Nevada Revised Statute 200.485, battery domestic violence is any force of violence within a domestic relationship. This includes violent acts to any of the following people:

  • Spouses/ ex-spouses

  • Romantic partners

  • Co-parent

  • Anyone related by blood or marriage

  • Their minor child

  • Legal guardian of their minor child

It is also important to know that you do not have to injure someone to be convicted of battery. All that you have to do to be convicted of battery domestic violence is to intentionally and unlawfully touch someone in an unwanted, aggressive, or violent manner. If you are found guilty for battery domestic violence, the penalties include expensive fines, mandatory jail time, and hours of community service.

2) A Battery Domestic Violence Charge Doesn’t Mean Conviction

It is common for people to believe that because they were arrested by the police officer, they are automatically convicted of battery domestic violence. However, that is far from the truth, and there are various strong defenses you can use in court to protect your rights. Some strong defenses that are viable include:

  • Fraudulent or False Allegations: It is extremely common for an angry spouse in a relationship to create a false report to get back at their spouse. Having an experienced defense lawyer who can point out the holes in an alleged victim’s story is important because they can expose the inaccuracies to prove that you are not guilty.

  • Self-Defense: An affirmative defense in allegations of battery domestic violence is that the person was acting in a way to protect themselves. Although this crime is not necessarily a crime to defend yourself against the fear of substantial bodily damage or death, it can happen and it is a justifiable act, not considered a crime.

  • Failure to prove guilty beyond a reasonable doubt: Just because the prosecutor creates an allegation, doesn’t mean the allegation is true. If the prosecutor cannot prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt to the judge or jury, the defendant is entitled to a verdict of not guilty.

3) Conviction Impacts Child Custody

As unsurprising as this may sound, family courts look down on parents with domestic violence convictions on their records. This typically results in the parent who was convicted of domestic violence to not receive custody of their child. Although every case is different, it is very likely that you will not be deemed a fit candidate to have custody of your child with a conviction on your record.

4) The Victim Cannot Just Drop the Charges

In Nevada, the alleged victim is not the one to make the decision to drop the charges and not proceed with the prosecution. The police have to investigate all allegations of domestic violence and make an arrest if warranted. Once the arrest is made, it is then in the hands of the prosecutor to decide whether or not to move forward with the case. Typically, the victim will not want the case to move forward, but the decision is ultimately up to the prosecutor. If the victim refuses to testify, the Court has the power to order them to do so. If the victim fails to comply with the Court’s order, they can face additional jail time for contempt in not following the Court’s order.

5) Conviction Impacts Firearm Possession

It is a crime to own or possess a firearm if you have a previous felony conviction on your record. Additionally, it is also a crime to own or possess a firearm if you have been convicted of a crime involving domestic violence. This law is expansive, and does not only include an actual conviction of domestic violence, but also includes a reduced charge based on allegation involving any element of domestic violence. The court will prosecute anyone in possession of a firearm who had been convicted of domestic violence, even if it was only a misdemeanor.

There are a lot of rights at stake when you are facing a battery domestic violence charge, including your freedom, your rights to see your children, and the social stigma around a domestic violence charge. If you or a loved one has been investigated, arrested, or charged with a crime involving battery domestic violence, it is crucial that you reach out to a trusted defense attorney for help in court. The criminal justice system can be confusing, and our team at The Defenders knows the system better than anyone else and is willing to help you aggressively fight the charge. Reach out to our experienced legal team and we will determine what the next best step is moving forward and how we can help you in court.

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