Domestic Violence Attorney Tampa

Hire a Skilled Former Prosecutor to Defend Your Domestic Violence Charges

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic Violence Attorney TampaFlorida law defines domestic violence as “any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.”

A family or household member can include the following individuals:

  • spouses
  • former spouses
  • individuals related by blood or marriage
  • individuals currently residing together “as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family”
  • individuals who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married

Except for individuals with a child in common, the victim of domestic violence must either be “currently residing or have in the past resided together” with the defendant in the same residence.

Have You Been Charged with Domestic Violence?

If you have been charged with domestic violence, you should take this situation very seriously. Depending on the underlying charge, you could be facing years of incarceration in county jail or prison. A domestic violence charge is generally brought in conjunction with another charge — one of the crimes listed above, usually battery or assault.

Domestic violence defense is an especially sensitive area of law because the parties involved are usually related or involved in a serious relationship. It is likely that the witnesses to the incident are people you know, possibly family members or neighbors. The alleged victim is likely to be a spouse or significant other. It is an emotionally charged situation that is impacting your home life and living situation. It is in your best interest to have this resolved as soon as possible, and a domestic violence attorney Tampa relies on can help you do just that.

Why Should You Contact Rooth Law Group?

Domestic Violence is such a specialized area of law, and a crime taken so seriously, that the State Attorneys’ Office has a separate division dealing exclusively with domestic violence charges. The prosecutors in the Domestic Violence division are the parties that often have exclusive power to drop the domestic violence charges. Because domestic violence is such a unique area of criminal law, you should hire a domestic violence attorney in Tampa who specializes in crimes of domestic violence to defend you on this charge.

Ryan Rooth of the Rooth Law Group is a former prosecutor in Tampa. Due to his years of experience, he understands what the prosecutors look at in deciding whether to drop or reduce a charge. He can use this knowledge in your domestic violence defense.

At Rooth Law Group, our defense usually begins with interviewing any witnesses present, reviewing the police report, and analyzing whether there are any defenses that apply to the domestic violence charge. Often, self-defense is a possible argument and we will verify the client’s claims with those of any and all witnesses present.

At Rooth Law Group, our defense usually begins with interviewing any witnesses present, reviewing the police report, and analyzing whether there are any defenses that apply to the domestic violence charge. Often, self-defense is a possible argument and we will verify the client’s claims with those of any and all witnesses present.

In the event you retain Rooth Law Group soon enough after your arrest, we may be able to intervene on your behalf with the prosecutor’s office to avoid the filing of charges against you at all. By hearing your version of the story, and an explanation of the mitigating factors that may have played a role in the dispute, the Assistant State Attorney assigned to your case may be persuaded to not file the charge. Don’t take any risks when it comes to your legal defense. Contact the experienced Tampa/St. Petersburg domestic violence defense attorneys at Rooth Law Group today.

Are You a Victim of Domestic Violence?

Rooth Law Group also works on the other side of these types of disputes. Our attorneys also represent victims, to ensure the victim’s interests are protected during investigations and while cases against their abusers progress through the court system. Contact our Pinellas domestic violence lawyers for a free consultation and we will thoroughly evaluate your case to determine the best course of action. A domestic violence attorney can make all the difference.

If you have been arrested, call the Rooth Law Group today to schedule a free initial consultation: (727) 797-9600 in Pinellas County or (813) 333-6517 in Hillsborough County.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I remove the judge’s no contact order?

A Motion to Modify Pretrial Release must be filed before the presiding judge. Each judge and each county is different in how they process and handle the motion to modify the no contact order. I have run across judges that require the defendant to begin anger management classes before they could have contact with an alleged victim. I have also had judges grant contact with the alleged victims blessing with no additional terms. Often times the judge will amend the no contact order to a no violent contact order. This means any violent contact toward the alleged victim by the defendant, if reported, is a violation of pretrial release and the judge could chose to revoke the bond placing the defendant back into the county jail.

The most important aspect of this request is for the alleged victim to approve and agree to the requested contact with the defendant. More times than not the judge will grant the request if the judge feels the contact requested is mutually wanted by the defendant and the victim, and the judge does not see any noticeable signs of foreseeable danger or escalation of the situation.

Domestic Violence offenses are prosecuted vigorously by the Office of the State Attorney and in many situations an Injunction seeking protection by the alleged victim is part of this process. Many things can benefit your defense if you are facing domestic violence charges.

What happens if I violate my pretrial release for a domestic violence charge?

A person is on pretrial release when they are released from jail and waiting for the conclusion of their criminal charges. This time period is known as pretrial release. A defendant is required to abide by the courts orders and stay law abiding.

Florida Statute 741.29 makes a willful violation of pretrial release of any pending offense of domestic violence a first degree misdemeanor. A first degree misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in county jail. The law also requires the defendant to appear before a judge before they are released from custody.

Can the police arrest both of us for domestic violence?

The police have the difficult task of trying to piece together what occurred before they arrived on scene. Florida law informs the police officer that an arrest of the primary aggressor is the preferred response of law enforcement. An arrest of a person acting in a reasonable manner to defend or protect oneself or another is not a preferred response under Florida Statute 741.29.

This does not mean the officer can’t make an arrest of both parties if they believe they have probable cause to show each party committed a crime of domestic violence. The law only prioritizes who law enforcement should focus on.

If I plead guilty to a domestic violence charge do I have to complete the batterers’ intervention program?

Yes, if you are adjudicated guilty or the adjudication is withheld, Florida Statute 741.281 requires the court to order the defendant to complete the batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation.

The court can waive the batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation if the court determines that the program is inappropriate and states on the record why the program is inappropriate.

If I plead no contest to a domestic violence charge do I have to complete the batterers’ intervention program?

Yes, if you are adjudicated guilty or the adjudication is withheld, Florida Statute 741.281 requires the court to order the defendant to complete the batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation.

The court can waive the batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation if the court determines that the program is inappropriate and states on the record why the program is inappropriate.

Can the police still arrest you for domestic violence if the “victim” does not want to prosecute?

Yes, the domestic violence law provides the police with carefully drafted authority to bypass the wishes of the victim or consideration of the relationship between the parties. The ultimate decision is made by the police who must have probable cause to believe a crime of domestic violence occurred. Law enforcement’s unilateral authority for this decision making power is defined in Florida Statute 741.29.

Who can be charged with domestic violence battery?

Florida law clearly defines who can face criminal charges for a domestic violence charge. The term “domestic violence” only defines the relationship of the people involved. The relationship must be in the form of one family member committing a crime against another family member or a person with whom he or she is in a dating relationship.

Florida law defines family to mean “spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.” This encompassing definition leaves very little guesswork in determining if something is domestic violence related.

Do I have to go on probation if I plea to a domestic violence charge?

Yes, Florida Statute 741.281 states that anyone pleading guilty or no contest to a domestic violence charge must be sentenced to a minimum of 12 months of probation.

What criminal charges are labeled as domestic violence?

The answer is not so clear cut. The domestic violence label can be included on charges of assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment. Other charges can also receive the domestic violence label if the criminal offense resulted in physical injury or death.

Keep in mind that the term domestic violence is a well defined term in Florida law and only defines the relationship of the people involved. The relationship must be in the form of one family member committing a crime against another family member or a person with whom he or she is in a dating relationship. Florida law defines Family to mean “spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.”

Will the police document a visit to my house for an allegation of domestic violence?

Yes, Florida law requires the police to file a written report for all domestic violence allegations. It does not matter if an arrest was made or not. Florida Statute 741.29 requires a supervisor to “sign off” on all reports pertaining to domestic violence. The reports are retained by the police agency and used for statistical purposes.


Case Results for Domestic Violence: