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At the David W. Martin Law Group, our Myrtle Beach domestic violence attorneys understand the incredible impact these charges can have on our clients’ lives.
Often, accusations of domestic violence begin with an arrest and are followed with a restraining order or other bond conditions that can limit our client’s movements and interfere with their ability to see their families, all before they get to tell their side of the story.
A conviction for domestic violence in South Carolina can lead to significant jail time and can remain on your criminal record going forward, affecting your ability to get a job or successfully apply for financial aid.
Our Myrtle Beach criminal defense attorney can help you understand your legal rights and options to fight these charges with confidence, so you can get your life back.
What is Considered Domestic Violence in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina?
Domestic violence charges in Myrtle Beach stem from one person causing physical harm to a household member or attempting to do so in a way that would place a reasonable person in fear of imminent harm.
Domestic violence incidents are defined as such when the altercation occurred between household members, which may include a couple who:
- Married, or previously married
- Live together, or previously lived together
- Have a child together
If the household member requirement is not met, the crime will be charged as assault and battery or another related crime.
What Are the Penalties For Domestic Violence Convictions in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina?
Domestic violence charges are classified as first, second, or third-degree, and a greater charge is referred to as Criminal Domestic Violence of a High and Aggravated Nature.
The requirements for each and their penalties include:
- Domestic Violence: Third Degree
Domestic violence in the third-degree charges occurs when there were no aggravating factors associated with the alleged circumstances that may lead to a 2nd or 1st-degree charge.
Conviction penalties for third-degree Domestic Violence in South Carolina may include:
- Fine between $2,500 to $5,000
- Jail time up to 90 days
Third-degree domestic violence charges may be addressed during a pretrial diversionary class for domestic abuse and anger management.
If a third-degree domestic violence charge is committed in front of a child, or against a pregnant woman, it automatically increases in severity to a second-degree domestic violence charge.
- Domestic Violence: Second Degree
Domestic violence in the second degree applies when a person commits an assault and any of the following are the following also occur:
- The assault results in moderate bodily injury,
- A protection order was violated during the assault,
- The person has one prior conviction of domestic violence, or
- The assault was in the presence of a minor, against someone known to be pregnant, during the commission of a specifically listed crime, committed by impeding the victims breathing or airflow, or preventing the person from contacting emergency assistance.
Conviction penalties for second-degree Domestic Violence in South Carolina may include:
- Fine between $2,500.00 and $5,000.00
- Imprisonment of up to three years
If you have been charged with domestic violence, contact a skilled criminal defense attorney before speaking with the police or solicitor’s office.
- Domestic Violence: First Degree
Domestic violence in the is first-degree involves the core definition of the act when the following also occurs:
- The assault results in or were likely to result in great bodily injury,
- Violates a protective order already in place while otherwise committing Domestic Violence in the second degree,
- The person charged has two or more prior convictions for domestic violence within the previous ten years,
- The person uses a firearm, or
- The assault resulted in moderate bodily injury and was in the presence of a minor, against someone known to be pregnant, during the commission of a specifically listed crime, committed by impeding the victims breathing or airflow, or preventing the person from contacting emergency assistance.
A conviction of domestic violence in the first degree in South Carolina is a felony, which carries a potential prison term of up to 10 years.
- Criminal Domestic Violence of a High and Aggravated Nature
The most serious domestic violence charge is domestic violence of a high or aggravated nature, which involves intentional disregard for human life, and carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Our Myrtle Beach criminal defense lawyers represent clients who are facing charges for:
- Drug Crimes
- DUAC & DUI
- Traffic Violations
- Assault & Battery
- Domestic Violence
- Possession of a Stolen Vehicle
- Sex Crimes
- Criminal Sexual Conduct with a Minor
- Gun Crimes
- Murder/Attempted Murder
Are Domestic Violence Charges in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina a Misdemeanor or Felony?
Domestic violence charges in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina may be filed as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the degree.
- Domestic Violence of a High and Aggravated Nature: Felony
- Domestic Violence in the 1st Degree: Felony
- Domestic Violence in the 2nd Degree: Misdemeanor
- Domestic Violence in the 3rd Degree: Misdemeanor
All domestic violence allegations should be taken very seriously and with the help of an experienced domestic violence defense attorney in Myrtle Beach who can outline your case with precision and skill to pursue the best outcome.
Partnering with a dedicated domestic violence lawyer may mean the difference between jail time and preserving your reputation. We can help.
Call 854-854-5623 or contact us online to learn more about how we can help you outline your criminal charges and customize your legal strategy to ensure your rights are protected throughout the proceedings.