The city of Denver takes domestic violence cases seriously. Domestic violence offenders can find themselves facing serious consequences, with habitual offenders getting stiffer penalties. Once charges have been brought for domestic violence they cannot be dismissed by anyone but the prosecutor. If you have been accused of domestic violence it’s imperative that you speak with one of our experienced domestic violence attorneys about your case. Here are the consequences that you should expect from a domestic violence charge in Denver, Colorado.

Potential Consequences Before and After Conviction

Everyone is assumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. This is why you should hire a domestic violence attorney to evaluate your case and assist you with the allegation. Domestic violence can lead to civil and criminal consequences such as:

  • Mandatory anger management treatment. Classes are intended to help the offender manage their anger in healthy ways.
  • An order of protection will be issued immediately following the release from jail before the conviction. The protection order will remain in place until the case has been resolved. If the person is charged with domestic violence then the protection order that prohibits contact with the victim or children involved may be extended or made permanent following conviction.
  • Domestic violence charges can result in a permanent criminal record. This includes felony charges. This record can affect future employment opportunities.
  • If you are not a US citizen and you are convicted of domestic violence while in the United States you could potentially face deportation.
  • A conviction can result in the loss of your right to possess or own a weapon or firearm.
  • Potential jail time, imprisonment, and/or hefty fines can all follow a conviction.

Domestic Violence and Child Custody

In addition to the consequences listed above, a domestic violence charge can have a significant impact on child custody in the state of Colorado. The courts will consider if the parent of the child in a custody case has been convicted of domestic violence, including spousal or child abuse. Domestic violence convictions do not automatically mean that the parent will be denied time with the child, but the safety of the minor is a consideration and can affect the amount of parenting time that is allocated.

Each case is treated individually and certain factors are looked at when assigning parenting time. In some cases, it is possible for the parent to still be awarded primary custody if they have a domestic violence conviction. Generally, the court will check if the offender has received counseling or therapy, how long ago the domestic violence was committed, the specific impact of the abuse on the child, the attachment between the parent and the child, and whether or not the convicted parent is capable of putting the minor’s needs before their own.

The court may also put restrictions on the allocated parenting time for the protection of the child. These restrictions may include requiring the exchange of the child to occur at a police station or other public place. Visitation may be required to be supervised by a family member, friend, or trained professional. Custody can be complicated in situations where domestic violence is involved. It’s important to know your rights and enlist the help of a skilled domestic violence attorney.

By: Dan Murphy

Denver criminal defense lawyer Daniel M. Murphy provides clients in the Denver area with aggressive and sympathetic legal representation. He graduated from the University of Denver Law School in 1994 and worked as a public defender before starting his own practice in 1996. He has defended clients accused of the most difficult criminal and alcohol-related charges. He also serves as a Moot Court Judge for Denver-area law students who rely on his mentorship.