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What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence Charges in Illinois?

 Posted on August 06, 2019 in Criminal Defense

Joliet domestic violence defense attorneyDomestic violence of any kind is against the law in Illinois. There are many acts that constitute domestic abuse. According to the Illinois Domestic Violence Act, any individual who hits, kicks, chokes, harasses, threatens, or interferes with the personal liberty of another family or household member has broken the law. Abuse can take place regardless of race, geographic location, or income level, and for many different reasons. The abuser may suffer from certain mental health issues such as addiction or post-traumatic stress disorder. An act of domestic abuse can also be performed in self-defense or defense of another person, or as a result of mutual combat. No matter what leads to domestic violence, there will be legal repercussions.   

Domestic Battery

Domestic battery is when a person intentionally causes bodily harm to a family or household member or makes physical contact in a provocative or insulting way. Domestic battery is considered a Class A misdemeanor, but it is increased to a Class 4 felony if the defendant has a previous conviction for domestic battery or if the action involves one of the following circumstances:

  • Battery using a firearm;
  • Battery involving a child; and
  • Battery involving sexual assault.

Domestic battery is also punishable as a Class 4 felony if the defendant has been convicted previously for committing a violent crime against a family or household member such as: 

  • Unlawful restraint;
  • Kidnapping;
  • Aggravated domestic battery; and
  • Murder.

An individual with a Class A misdemeanor offense could face a potential maximum sentence of less than one year and $2,500 in fines. However, a Class 4 felony results in a possible maximum six-year prison term and a $25,000 fine.

Aggravated Domestic Battery

During the act of committing domestic battery, if the defendant causes certain injuries to the victim, the charges are elevated to aggravated domestic battery. This additional harm includes:

  • Great bodily harm;
  • Disfigurement;
  • Permanent disability; and
  • Strangulation. 

Aggravated domestic battery is classified as a Class 2 felony. If a defendant is sentenced to probation or conditional discharge, there is also a requirement for the defendant to be incarcerated for at least 60 days. If the defendant has prior convictions for aggravated domestic battery, the court is required to sentence the defendant to at least three years in prison.

Contact a Will County Domestic Abuse Defense Lawyer

Domestic abuse can take many different forms, so it is important to understand the legal definitions if you or someone you know is charged with this type of crime. The consequences for a domestic violence conviction can include prison time and steep fines. Just being accused of such a crime can impact many areas of your life, possibly resulting in losing family and friends as well as your career. The skilled legal team at McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC can assist you in planning a defense to potentially reduce your charges. To schedule a free consultation with one of our diligent Joliet domestic violence defense attorneys, call 815-727-0100 today. 





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