Written by attorney Mitchell Scott Sexner

Domestic Violence & Domestic Battery crimes in Illinois

Domestic violence can include assault, battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, kidnapping, false imprisonment, stalking or murder. A domestic violence charge is a serious allegation involving life-changing consequences. Imprisonment, probation, counseling, substance abuse treatment, and orders of protection are just a few of the many serious sentencing provisions associated with domestic violence charges. Court supervision may not be an available sentencing option for domestic violence charges. State officials and agencies commit substantial resources and time to vigorously prosecute these offenses, so an experienced attorney is vital to your proper defense.

Illinois law defines domestic battery as intentionally or knowingly (1) causing bodily harm to a family or household member or (2) making physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature. Illinois law defines a household or family member in an expansive and inclusive manner. Former spouses, boyfriends or girlfriends, and caregivers qualify as family members. Generally domestic battery is a misdemeanor. However, the statute contains a number of aggravating factors that may make the charge a felony. People with a history of domestic violence convictions may face mandatory imprisonment, community service, and costs. A person charged with a first offense aggravated battery or a subsequent aggravated battery offense faces significant mandatory imprisonment provisions as well.

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The best outcome for a person facing such a charge is to convince the prosecution to dismiss the case. However, if the prosecution is unwilling to dismiss the case, experienced attorneys can review your case to determine whether a defense may apply. In most cases, the prosecutor must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, so if an agreement cannot be reached with the prosecutor or judge, your criminal defense attorney will be properly prepared to take your case to trial

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