Serious, Skilled Defense Against Domestic Violence Charges In Nashville
The dynamics of romantic and family relationships are complex. In many cases, they are messy. Outside observers rarely know the full story, and that’s because private lives are supposed to be private. However, as soon as someone suspects or makes allegations of domestic violence, a once-private matter becomes very public and has the potential to result in jail time, a criminal record and reputational damage.
If you’ve been arrested for or charged with domestic violence, you may discover that many people don’t want to hear your side of the story – but I do.
I am Chelsea Nicholson, a criminal defense attorney with more than 16 years of experience fighting for clients in the Nashville area. I understand the damage that a domestic violence conviction can do to your freedom and your future, and I will work tirelessly to help you contest the charges or otherwise resolve them favorably.
Defining Domestic Assault Under Tennessee Law
In Tennessee, domestic violence is formally called domestic assault. What distinguishes it from other violent crimes is the relationship between the alleged perpetrator and the alleged victim. Often, the two parties are current or former spouses, romantic partners or sexual partners. However, domestic assault can also occur between current or former relatives by marriage, legal or blood-related family members or even two people who share a home or living space but are otherwise unrelated.
Violent contact is not always a factor. Someone commits assault if they:
- Deliberately or recklessly injure another party
- Create a situation where another party reasonably fears imminent injury
- Engage in unwanted physical contact that can reasonably be construed as offensive
Domestic violence can occur even if no touching or physical contact occurs. If someone intimidates a partner, for example, and the partner reasonably believes they are in immediate danger, they may be able to successfully allege domestic assault.
The Consequences Of Domestic Violence Charges Can Be Far-Reaching
In most cases, domestic assault is charged as a Class A or Class B misdemeanor. Conviction for a first offense can result in a jail term of between six months and just over 11 months and fines ranging from $500 up to about $2,500. Jail time and fines generally increase for repeat offenses.
These are not the only potential consequences, however. If you were accused of domestic assault, the alleged victim may seek a protection order, which could greatly interrupt your life. If the accuser is a spouse or co-parent, the protection order could make it difficult or impossible to stay in your home or maintain a relationship with your children.
Housing, Employment – All Are At Risk When A Domestic Violence Conviction Shows Up On A Criminal Record
Long after your sentence is served, a conviction will continue to show up in criminal background checks, making it difficult to secure employment, credit, housing and more. Many attorneys fail to consider these long-term consequences and will advise their clients to just take a plea deal because it initially seems favorable.
If I am your attorney, I will first discuss all potential defense strategies, including arguing self-defense or false or exaggerated accusations. Moreover, I will not recommend any course of action without discussing exactly how it could impact your future. I will ensure that an immediate win doesn’t come at a much higher price down the road.
Learn How I Can Help You During A Free Initial Consultation
At my firm, Chelsea Nicholson, Attorney at Law, I defend clients facing serious criminal charges in Nashville, Tennessee, and surrounding counties. When you contact me for a free consultation, I will take the time to hear your side of the story, assess your charges and explain your rights and legal options. To get started, give me a call at 615-913-3932 or submit an online contact form.
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