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FAQ: A Closer Look at Colorado Domestic Violence? Defining the Breadth of the DV “Tag”

By the Colorado Domestic Violence Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg

Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior in which one person attempts to control another through threats or actual use of physical, verbal, or psychological violence or sexual assault on their current or past intimate partner.

Colorado’s Legal Definition of Domestic Violence – legal definition:

Domestic violence means an act or threatened act of violence upon a person with whom the actor is or has been involved in an intimate relationship.

Domestic violence also includes any other crime against a person or against property or any municipal ordinance violation against a person or against property, when used as a method of coercion, control, punishment, intimidation, or revenge directed against a person with whom the actor is or has been involved in an intimate relationship.

Intimate relationship means a relationship between spouses, former spouses, past or present unmarried couples, or persons who are both the parents of the same child regardless of whether the persons have been married or have lived together at any time.

Other terms for domestic violence include:

· battering

· partner abuse

Domestic violence can include:

Physical Violence

   · pushing, shoving, slapping, biting, kicking, choking, pinching, pulling hair, hitting,    grabbing, beating

· stabbing, shooting

· purposely locking out of the house

· abandoning in dangerous places

· throwing objects

· destruction of property

· subjecting to reckless driving

· threatening with a weapon

· refusing victim help while sick or pregnant

· any physical restraint

· purposely cutting off victim’s hair

· use of any object to inflict pain, punishment, or to intimidate

Sexual Abuse

  · forcing sex

· rape

· unwanted fondling and touching

· ritual abuse

· stalking

· preventing victim from leaving the house

· disconnecting the phone

· abusing a pet

· destroying victim’s property

Economic Abuse

· taking all the money from a joint account

· stealing joint property or possessions

· ruining victim’s credit

· harassing victim at work

Domestic violence can be overt and/or subtle.

· overt direct action such as homicide, vandalism to the victim’s car or other property, and threats.

· subtle direct action such as use of workplace property to commit an illegal act such as sending threatening, harassing, or abusive e-mail and faxes; use of workplace property to violate protective orders, such as phoning the victim when prohibited by court order; and use of an agency car to follow (stalk) the victim.

Criminally, domestic violence is defined as “an act or threatened act of violence against a person with whom the actor is or has been involved in an intimate relationship.” (Colorado Revised Statutes Section 18-6-800.3(1))

Domestic violence also includes “any other crime against a person or against property, or any municipal ordinance violation against a person or against property when used as a method of coercion, control, punishment, intimidation, or revenge directed against a person with whom the actor is or has been involved in an intimate relationship.” (Colorado Revised Statutes Section 18-6-800.3(1))

An intimate relationship is defined as “a relationship between spouses, former spouses, past or present unmarried couples, or persons who are both parents of the same child regardless of whether the persons have been married or have lived together at any time.” (Colorado Revised Statutes Section 18-6-800.3(2))

Domestic violence is not a crime in and of itself. Domestic violence is an enhancement to other criminal offenses such as harassment, assault, trespassing, and destruction of property. Upon conviction, the domestic violence enhancement carries additional sentencing considerations, including mandatory perpetrator treatment.


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___________________________
H. Michael Steinberg Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
The Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg
A Denver, Colorado Lawyer Focused Exclusively On
Colorado Criminal Law For Over 30 Years.
DTC Quadrant Building
5445 DTC Parkway, Penthouse 4
Greenwood Village, Colorado, 80111
Primary Web Site:  http://www.HMichaelSteinberg.com
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