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FAQs About Domestic Violence in Arizona

If you’re accused of committing domestic violence in Phoenix, or anywhere else in Maricopa County or Arizona, you’ll want to become familiar with the law and what can happen if you are found guilty of domestic violence as defined under Arizona Revised Statute (A.R.S. § 13-3601).

Under Arizona law, you commit domestic violence if you threaten, harass, molest, stalk, attack, batter, or strike an intimate partner, your children, or another family member. If you commit domestic violence against a boyfriend or girlfriend, a spouse, your child, or another family member, the victim has the right to ask the court for an Order of Protection, which is another term for a domestic violence restraining order.

Below, we answer a series of frequently asked questions about domestic violence. If you have further questions, we urge you to contact our firm for a free consultation.

Domestic Violence: Questions & Answers

How are criminal charges filed against me?
When someone calls 911 to report domestic violence, the police who arrive at the scene will decide whether it’s appropriate to issue a charge or if the case needs to be forwarded to an investigator. Once the investigator is done with the investigation, he or she may send it to the prosecutor to review the case and decide if charges should be filed.

Are all domestic violence cases sent to the same prosecutor?
No, they are not. It all depends if the case is for a misdemeanor or a felony. If it’s a misdemeanor case, it’s sent to the City of Phoenix Prosecutor’s Office, and if it’s for felony domestic violence, it’s sent to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.

What if I’m not formally charged?
You will receive a letter in the mail informing you that you are not being charged. If you’re interested, you can contact the prosecutor at (602) 262-6461 and find out why you were not prosecuted.

Can the alleged victim drop the charges?
No, he or she cannot do that. Since it’s a crime to commit domestic violence, the state is the one that decides whether to file charges or dismiss a case, not the alleged victims.

If I’m convicted of domestic violence, do I have to give up my firearms?
Yes. If you are convicted of domestic violence, you will be prohibited from owning ammunition and firearms. If you are convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence, and you possess a firearm or ammunition, you commit a federal felony offense under 18 USC § 922(g)(9).

Facing domestic violence charges? Contact our firm to speak with a Phoenix Domestic Violence Attorney for free.

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