What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Arizona?

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What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Arizona?

Domestic violence affects countless individuals and families across the country. Like many states, Arizona takes domestic violence cases extremely seriously. Crimes are prosecuted much more aggressively when they involve domestic violence, and the penalties are severe. Here’s everything you should know about domestic violence laws in Arizona. 

What Does Arizona Consider Domestic Violence?

In Arizona, a wide range of crimes can constitute domestic violence. However, domestic violence is never charged as a crime all on its own—it is usually added on to other charges. This may include charges of disorderly conduct, assault, stalking, and other crimes laid out in Arizona Revised Statute (ARS) 13-3601. Adding domestic violence to another charge results in harsher penalties for that crime. 

Whether the court considers a crime to involve domestic violence depends on the relationship between the defendant and the victim. The relationship must fit one of the following categories: 

  • They live together or have lived together in the past
  • They’re married or divorced
  • They are or were previously partners
  • They have a child together
  • One of them is pregnant with the other’s child
  • They are parent/guardian and child
  • They’re siblings or otherwise related by blood
  • The victim is a child who lives with or has previously lived with the defendant and is related to someone else who lives with the defendant

Is Domestic Violence a Felony in Arizona?

An offense involving domestic violence can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony in Arizona, depending on the type of crime. For instance, disorderly conduct is typically a misdemeanor, unless a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument is involved. 

Crimes commonly involved in a domestic violence case include:

  • Assault 
  • Criminal trespass
  • Criminal damage
  • Dangerous crimes against children
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Disobeying a court order
  • Endangerment
  • Homicide (including murder and manslaughter)
  • Stalking
  • Threatening, intimidation, or harassment
  • Unlawful imprisonment

Repeat offenses of domestic violence can result in felony charges. For example, committing a third domestic violence offense within a seven-year period results in an aggravated domestic violence charge. This crime is always a felony, even if the previous domestic violence convictions were only misdemeanors. 

What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Arizona?

The exact punishment for a domestic violence charge depends on the crime committed and whether it is a felony or a misdemeanorAll types of domestic violence charges result in mandatory domestic violence counseling and/or anger management courses. The conviction will appear in background checks and can be used against the defendant in child custody cases.

First Offense

Many types of first-offense domestic violence crimes are Class 1 misdemeanors (the most severe type of misdemeanor). This charge carries up to six months in jail, fines totaling $2,500 plus additional fees and surcharges, and probation of up to five years.

Repeat Offenses

Repeat offenses of any type of domestically-related crime can result in an aggravated domestic violence charge, which is a Class 5 felony. The penalties for aggravated domestic violence include (but are not limited to) a maximum of four years in prison and up to $150,000 in fines and fees.

Scottsdale Domestic Violence Attorney

In Arizona, an officer doesn’t have to witness domestic violence to make an arrest, they only need probable cause. So if you or a loved one is charged with domestic violence, you’ll need the help of an experienced attorney to build a strong defense. Give us a call at 480-481-0616 today to set up a free consultation with the Van Norman Law team. 

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