October is National Domestic Violence Month
October is here again, and that means National Domestic Violence Awareness Month is upon us. It’s a time when we take a moment to examine how domestic violence not only affects our families and loved ones, but the community as a whole. According the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. In a span of one year, that equates to more than 10 million women and men.
Looking at the statistics in New Jersey, there was a 7 percent decrease in domestic abuse offenses reported in 2012. However, the number of calls is still a staggering amount – the police responded to 65,050 calls of domestic abuse. Of these offenses, 75 percent of the victims involved a female. Unfortunately, children have been involved in these cases – 29 percent of all domestic violence offenses in 2012 had a child either involved or present.
The laws in New Jersey are quite straightforward when it comes to domestic abuse. According to the law, domestic violence is defined as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. It can also be defined as an occurrence of one or more of the following offenses:
- Criminal mischief
- Criminal restraint
- Criminal sexual contact
- Criminal trespass
- False imprisonment
- Sexual assault
- Terroristic threats
If a victim either shows or claims that an injury has occurred due to potential domestic violence, the police are required to arrest that suspect. Even if the victim doesn’t claim an injury has happened, an arrest can be made if there is probable cause that an act of domestic violence has been committed. In addition, the police may determine if an emergency temporary restraining order is necessary to protect the victim from any further acts of violence.
Speak up. There is help available to those that have been affected by domestic abuse. Click here to contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline. If you need legal assistance, we can help. Contact the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone today for a free consultation.