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An overview of domestic violence charges in Colorado

You and your spouse are having a rather loud argument. Your neighbor calls the police to complain and the police show up at your door. They charge you with disturbing the peace. Then, one of the detectives speaks to your spouse because he notices their black eye. The detective suspects things got physical and adds domestic violence to the original charge of disturbing the peace.

The state of Colorado is a mandatory arrest state when it comes to domestic violence. This means that if the police suspect that you have committed domestic violence, they must arrest you. That said, domestic violence is not a stand-alone crime. It is a charge made as an enhancement to the original charge.

What constitutes domestic violence in Colorado?

Colorado law defines domestic violence as “…an act or threatened act of violence against a person with whom the defendant has an intimate relationship…when the act is used to coerce, control, punish, intimidate, or seek revenge against that person.”

The most common offenses which include domestic violence charges are as follows:

  • Assault
  • Harassment
  • Child abuse
  • Stalking
  • Violating an order of protection/restraining order
  • Elder abuse
  • Menacing
  • False imprisonment
  • Sexual assault

When you are charged with domestic violence an order of protection will be taken out against you. Violating that order could result in additional penalties.

The courts consider domestic violence to be a very serious offense. Therefore, it is fast-tracked. This means that the arrest, processing and plea in court all happen within a day or two. Should you find yourself facing a domestic violence charge, talking with an experienced Lakewood domestic violence lawyer would be beneficial.