Domestic Violence Charges
Domestic Violence Convictions Change Everything. They are not like other criminal charges.
Common domestic violence charges include:
Domestic violence charges are often misdemeanors, but with serious repercussions.
Domestic Violence Charges and Jail Time
When police respond to a domestic violence (DV) call, the result is often that someone is taken to jail. Getting released from jail can be difficult, especially if you live with or near the alleged victim. The accused will not generally be released unless he is able to pay substantial bail, pay for an ankle monitor, and live at a residence a substantial distance from the alleged victim. No contact will usually be allowed. This means a domestic violence charge often leads to sudden family separation and no ability to communicate. Financial distress often results.
If the accused cannot meet the conditions for release, he will tend to stay in jail until trial or guilty plea. This is by design. Release upon a guilty plea is the carrot domestic violence prosecutors hold out to obtain convictions. Dedicated prosecution teams specialize in obtaining domestic violence convictions. When a person is held in jail, unable to work, pay his family’s bills, or communicate with loved ones, he is likely to plead guilty if it secures his release. Very often, the sentence for domestic violence is credit for time already served in jail. However, jail is only part of the sentence.
Once a person is convicted of domestic violence and released from jail, he still cannot usually go home. Families sometimes rent a motel room for months, or rely on extended family to establish a separate residence.
Only after completing a substantial portion of domestic violence treatment are most convicted abusers allowed home, and only with the blessing of the district attorney or the judge.
Domestic Violence Treatment
The convicted abuser will be required to complete domestic violence and anger management treatment. The standard program is thirty-six to forty-eight weeks and requires weekly attendance. It must be paid for out-of-pocket or through insurance. Limited courses are available, so your schedule must fit.
Child Welfare Repercussions
Domestic violence in the presence of children can constitute child abuse in Oregon. Child Welfare officials from the Department of Human Services (DHS) commonly investigate families involved in these cases. Not only are alleged abusers under scrutiny but alleged victims as well.
Child Welfare will want to know what steps are being taken to prevent future exposure to domestic violence and potentially treat for past exposure. Child Welfare officials are willing to take families to court to enforce compliance with their protocols.
Misdemeanor domestic violence convictions lead to firearm prohibitions under state and federal law. The only ways for rights to be restored are an eventual motion to set aside the conviction or petition for firearm rights restoration.
Definitions of Domestic Violence
The Oregon Department of Human Services uses a wide-ranging definition:
“There are many definitions of domestic violence used across the Department of Human Services. Some are in statute or rule, others are definitions used in practice. All include forms of physical injury/abuse, sexual abuse or assault, intimidation, verbal abuse and emotional abuse or threats of such. These tactics are used by one adult to coerce or control another.”
The statutory definition in ORS 135.230 is less sweeping than that of DHS:
“Domestic violence means abuse between family or household members.”
(a) Attempting to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing physical injury;
(b) Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly placing another in fear of imminent serious physical injury; or
(c) Committing sexual abuse in any degree…
“Family or household members” means any of the following:
(b) Former spouses.
(c) Adult persons related by blood or marriage.
(d) Persons cohabiting with each other.
(e) Persons who have cohabited with each other or who have been involved in a sexually intimate relationship.
(f) Unmarried parents of a minor child.
Defending a Domestic Violence Case
Domestic Violence charges require an attorney to get to work quickly. The attorney needs to get his client out of jail. The longer the accused stays locked up, the more likely he is to take a deal that gets him out of jail. The case needs investigated immediately. The best defense to a criminal charge is innocence. Initial police reports often get the facts wrong. Police respond to a call and have to make quick decisions in the heat of the moment. Skilled investigators are necessary for presenting the truth.
Child Welfare also might be involved early in a case. Both alleged abusers and alleged victims need an attorney with criminal and child welfare experience to look out for their best interests. Child Welfare involvement can add a new layer of stress to the family hardship that often accompanies domestic violence cases. Though the Child Welfare case is separate from the criminal case, the family is well-served by having legal representation in both areas. If things are under control as best they can be on the home front, the accused can concentrate on doing what is best for his criminal case.
When a person completes probation, including an intensive treatment program, and a sufficient period of time goes by, the conviction is eligible to be set aside under the same rules as other convictions. Information about setting aside a conviction is available in the Rights Restoration section of our website.
Lohrke Law is ready to handle Your Domestic Violence case.
Jesse Lohrke is an experienced child welfare and criminal defense attorney. He has an investigative team with extensive experience in these cases. He can advise clients through all criminal and child welfare aspects of their domestic violence cases.
A tireless attorney who earned my highest recommendation.
Mr. Lohrke did a fantastic job of representing me. His initial recommendations to me were fair and suitable to my situation. When I explained to him my specific needs and the extenuating circumstances he went to bat for me tirelessly. It took a while and he never slowed down or suggested to me that I needed to compromise. I give Mr. Lohrke my highest recommendation and I believe you are in very good hands if he is representing you.
Review on Avvo – September 2014
Elizabeth persevered and changed my life
I highly recommend Elizabeth Lohrke of Lohrke Law to be a dedicated, detailed, driven, and experienced Attorney, who didn’t give up when dealing with the bureaucracies of the Tri-County Courts, Elizabeth persevered and changed my life back to be a normal, law-abiding citizen.
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Review on Google – February 2018
One of the best attorneys in town hands down
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Best lawyer a man could ask for.
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Review on Avvo – August 2014
Elizabeth didn’t make me feel less than a person
Elizabeth, I want to thank you for helping me with this matter. I appreciate that you listened to me as a client. Even though I made a mistake, you didn’t make me feel less than a person. I know that it hasn’t been easy because of covid-19 and my health problems. I have been recommending your name to my friends that may know of someone in my situation. Thank you again.
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Review on Avvo – December 2015
My experience with Jesse was great
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Review on Google – June 2017
Only Regret is I Didn’t Pursue This Earlier
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I have passed on your name and website to a few individuals, explaining how you helped me.
Again, thank you very much.
J.H. Union County, Oregon
2019 Rights Restoration Client
Jesse Lohrke: Holistic Attorney
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Review on Avvo – May 2014
I Feel Incredibly Lucky
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To put it simply, Jesse Lohrke is a badass attorney, and I wish anyone going through a legal case could have an attorney like him.
T.G. — Bend, Oregon
2019 Dependency Client
Cleaning up my criminal record and getting back my gun rights.
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Review on Avvo – December 2014
Above and Beyond
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Review on Avvo – December 2014
Jesse is the best at what he does
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Review on Google – May 2018