Domestic Assault and Violence NH RSA 631:2-b Criminal Law
NH domestic violence criminal assault charges and domestic violence law can be found in RSA 631:2-b. Occasionally, domestic assault charges are intertwined with divorce litigation and custody disputes. It is imperative to retain an attorney that is very experienced in both areas of law when handling domestic assault charges. Attorney Richard E. Clark has substantial experience and training in criminal defense, divorce, custody litigation, and Court proceedings. Legal counsel must be aware of the interplay between handling the criminal aspect while mitigating damage to the client's divorce proceeding.
The State of New Hampshire takes Domestic Assault seriously. The County Attorney's Office typically deals with felonies, more serious crimes than misdemeanors. Some NH County Attorney's Offices have Domestic Violence Units where a County Attorney Prosecutor handles all domestic assault charges within their county.
Through Attorney Clark's zealous defense of client's wrongfully charged with RSA 631:2-b domestic violence, quite often the charges are withdrawn by the State. Domestic charges occur with more frequency when alcohol is involved, around the holidays, when custody is an issue, and when marital strife is occurring more frequently. After the domestic assault/violence arrest the bail conditions typically require no contact with the injured spouse and the parties minor children. Those charged with criminal domestic violence may strive to get their family back together where having a parent absent from the minor children of the family is not god for them. Attorney Clark drafts motions for his clients in this position and conducts Court hearings to modify bail conditions. More often than not, the State prosecutor does not agree with the modifications and the hearing is contested. Contested means the State and defense counsel are not in agreement and the Court will make an Order after a hearing on the merits. Attorney Clark has successfully completed Court hearings of this nature to protect his client's interests.
If you have been charged with a domestic assault charge it is important one does not violate the bail conditions. Some New Hampshire bail conditions include: no contact with the spouse, not entering the residence and place of employment of the spouse, no firearms or related item possession, not being arrested for other criminal charges, and some require the Defendant to have no alcohol consumption.
The State of New Hampshire defines domestic assault/violence under RSA 631:2-b, which states:
NH RSA 631:2-b Domestic Violence. –
I. A person is guilty of domestic violence if the person commits any of the following against a family or household member or intimate partner:
(a) Purposely or knowingly causes bodily injury or unprivileged physical contact against another by use of physical force;
(b) Recklessly causes bodily injury to another by use of physical force;
(c) Negligently causes bodily injury to another by means of a deadly weapon;
(d) Uses or attempts to use physical force, or by physical conduct threatens to use a deadly weapon for the purpose of placing another in fear of imminent bodily injury;
(e) Threatens to use a deadly weapon against another person for the purpose to terrorize that person;
(f) Coerces or forces another to submit to sexual contact by using physical force or physical violence;
(g) Threatens to use physical force or physical violence to cause another to submit to sexual contact and the victim believes the actor has the present ability to execute the threat;
(h) Threatens to use a deadly weapon to cause another to submit to sexual contact and the victim believes the actor has the present ability to carry out the threat;
(i) Confines another unlawfully, as defined in RSA 633:2, by means of physical force or the threatened use of a deadly weapon, so as to interfere substantially with his or her physical movement;
(j) Knowingly violates a term of a protective order issued pursuant to RSA 173-B:4, I by means of the use or attempted use of physical force or the threatened use of a deadly weapon;
(k) Uses physical force or the threatened use of a deadly weapon against another to block that person's access to any cell phone, telephone, or electronic communication device with the purpose of preventing, obstructing, or interfering with:
(1) The report of any criminal offense, bodily injury, or property damage to a law enforcement agency; or
(2) A request for an ambulance or emergency medical assistance to any law enforcement agency or emergency medical provider.
II. Domestic violence is a class A misdemeanor unless the person uses or threatens to use a deadly weapon as defined in RSA 625:11, V, in the commission of an offense, in which case it is a class B felony.
III. For purposes of this section:
(a) "Family or household member'' means:
(1) The actor's spouse or former spouse;
(2) A person with whom the actor is cohabiting as a spouse, parent, or guardian;
(3) A person with whom the actor cohabited as a spouse, parent, or guardian but no longer shares the same residence;
(4) An adult with whom the actor is related by blood or marriage; or
(5) A person with whom the actor shares a child in common.
(b) "Intimate partner'' means a person with whom the actor is currently or was formerly involved in a romantic relationship, regardless of whether or not the relationship was sexually consummated.
IV. Upon conviction and sentencing, the court shall document on the sentencing form the specific nature of the relationship between the defendant and the victim, by reference to subparagraphs III(a)(1)-(5) and III(b).
V. In addition to any other penalty authorized by law, the court shall levy a fine of $50 for each conviction under this section. If the court determines that the defendant is unable to pay the fine on the date imposed, the court may defer payment or order periodic payments thereof. Fines imposed under this section shall not be subject to an additional penalty assessment. The clerk shall forward all fines collected under this paragraph to the department of health and human services for the purposes of RSA 173-B:15.