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Domestic Battery – California Penal Code 243(e)(1)

California Penal Code Section 243(e)(1) has to do with a domestic violence situation where somebody angry with another person and commits a battery against them, typically in these type of charges, you’re not going to see any injury on the person.

I would consider them a step down from a California Penal Code 273.5 which is commonly known as spousal abuse.  Also, if someone is charged a Penal Code Section 243(e)(1) it’s gonna be a Domestic Battery Charges in Los Angelesmisdemeanor and not a felony.  Where the 273.5 can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor.

Probation and 52-Week Domestic Violence Program

So, this is obviously better than a regular domestic violence charge, but not much better, because you still lose a lot of rights.  You’re still going to be put on probation for three years.  The prosecutors are typically still going to want the 52-week domestic violence program.

You’re still going to lose your ability to bear arms for ten years more than likely, and you’re still facing jail time and a host of other penalties.  So, even though a 243(e)(1) of the Penal Code is better than some of the other charges that you could be charged with related to spousal abuse or domestic violence, it’s still not something that you want on your record if you could avoid it.

Lesser charges also are Penal Code 242.  It’s just a simple battery.  You pushed somebody; you hit somebody, it doesn’t really have anything necessarily to do with domestic violence, it’s just a battery charge.

Then obviously going down from there, there’s a disturbing the peace.  There’s other offenses that you could be charged with.  But, the biggest thing is you’re being charged with a misdemeanor.  It’s a crime.  You’re going to be put on probation  You’re going to have a criminal record.  These are all concerns that you should have if you’re being charged with a PC 243(e)(1).

I usually see this charge when it comes to a boyfriend/girlfriend type argument.  The police are called out.  They realize there’s been some sort of violence between the two parties and they decide to arrest one person and then the prosecutors get the case.  They charge a criminal complaint and now we have to deal with the case.

Defenses to PC 243(e)(1) Domestic Battery Charges in Los Angeles

Defenses to a Penal Code Section 243(e)(1) would of course be self-defense.  I’ve also seen situations where property can be defended in these scenarios.  Typically, you cannot use deadly force to defend property.

However, if someone’s breaking up all of your property and are about to damage your computer or laptop, for example, and throw it on the ground and you grab him by the arms and stop him and take it away from him, that certainly wouldn’t be a crime.  You would be defending property.  There’s a jury instruction on that.

If someone’s attacking you and trying to hit you and you defend yourself — block the punches, grab the person, push them away, push them out of your way and try to get away from them, these are not crimes.  This is a self-defense situation when it comes to a battery charge in Los Angeles County.

I’ve been handling these 243(e)(1) cases for the past twenty-five years and a lot of times people have to plead guilty to them because they lose their temper and hit somebody and there’s proof.

But, the question becomes what is the proof?  Because if there’s no proof, then you might have a good chance to be able to defend the case.  You might be in a position where you can prove that you didn’t do anything wrong.

Sometimes you’re defending yourself; sometimes you’re defending somebody else; sometimes you’re defending your property.  It really just depends on the facts and circumstances surrounding the case.

Retain a Los Angeles Domestic Violence Attorney

What I’d like to have you do is come in, we sit down and go over everything.  We really get down to what happened.  Do you have prior bad acts of domestic violence? What you did; what you didn’t do, and then we have to make a decision of whether or not this is a case that we’re going to try to negotiate and plea bargain with the prosecutors or whether this is a case that we’re going to fight all the way.

There’s different strategies depending on what happened and what the plan is moving forward. So, pick up the phone, make the call and we will do everything we can to help defend you in your battery domestic violence-related offense.

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Ronald D. Hedding, ESQ.

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