Wolf Law is your primary resource for Colorado domestic abuse information and legal representation.
Colorado domestic abuse cases move quickly in our court systems; they’re pushed through as “fast-track” procedures, and without legal guidance it’s common for victims and offenders alike to feel misrepresented or kept in the dark.
What you don’t know about Colorado’s domestic violence laws can hurt you. Call 720-479-8574 for a free consultation with a knowledgeable Denver domestic violence attorney.
Colorado Domestic Violence Laws
Domestic violence cases are unique in our legal system. Colorado does not have a specific statute detailing domestic violence the same way our criminal code covers physical assault.
Because of this, domestic violence is not considered a standalone offense and is instead tacked on to other criminal charges. In legal terms, this is called a “sentence enhancer” or an “aggravator.”
According to Colorado revised statues, “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…”
The criminal code also includes acts of violence against property; municipal ordinance violations against a person, or his or her property (including animals); and especially when the property is used to coerce, control, punish, intimidate, or exact revenge against a person whom the offender has been involved with intimately.
Colorado defines “intimate relationship” in the following way:
“… 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.”
Understanding how Colorado defines domestic violence terms will help offenders and victims know what steps to take following a domestic incident.
Immediate Arrests in Domestic Violence Cases
Colorado enforces a mandatory arrest law in domestic violence cases. This means if the police get called to a residence and they determine probable cause, someone is going to jail.
A minor domestic incident can quickly escalate to serious domestic abuse charges.
For example, if a harassment charge is alleged by a victim, and it’s found the victim and offender were involved in an intimate relationship (past or present), law enforcement is required to make an immediate arrest to ensure the continued safety of the alleger, as well as the safety of other occupants in a home.
There are no “take backs” with regards to domestic violence allegations.
Once a domestic violence incident has been charged there’s no avoiding certain immediate, legal repercussions:
- Law enforcement must arrest an offender if they feel there is probable cause that a confrontation involved domestic violence.
- Offenders will be taken to jail and may be required to spend the night there; offenders remain in jail until a judge can set a bond amount.
- A domestic violence case can’t be dismissed if the accuser doesn’t want to press charges; instead, the prosecuting agency must declare to the court under oath that he or she can’t prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.
If you’ve been involved in a domestic abuse incident and you’re not sure what to do, call Wolf Law at 720-479-8574.
Aggressive Representation for Colorado Offenders and Victims
Domestic violence cases have far-reaching implications for victims and offenders:
- Victims may not feel represented by the police or district attorney in a domestic violence case, especially if the victim doesn’t decide to file charges against the offender. Victims deserve to have their voice heard.
- Offenders may not know enough about Colorado’s domestic violence laws to understand the gravity of these offenses. Even minor offenses carry lifelong consequences.
This is why it’s important for alleged offenders, as well as victims, to understand the nature and implications of domestic violence in Colorado.
Wolf Law has managed hundreds of domestic abuse cases—it’s the area of law where we got started. And while we can’t guarantee a particular outcome for a case, we strive to ensure every client gets the help they need, the representation they deserve, and a fair trial.
Call 720-479-8574 for a free consultation with a Denver domestic violence lawyer.
Facts About Domestic Violence in Colorado
Accusations of domestic violence are not rare in Colorado. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), the frequency and severity of domestic abuse can vary dramatically.
Here are some quick facts every Colorado resident should know:
- In 2014, 16,700 people reported one or more domestic violence crimes to Colorado law enforcement.
- In the same year, 25 Coloradans were killed by former or current intimate partners; nearly 70% of those victims were killed by a gun.
- More than 300,000 people in Colorado are stalked during their lifetime.
- 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men in the U.S. have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.
- The presence of a gun in the home during a domestic violence incident increases the risk of homicide by at least 500%.
- Nearly 80% of Colorado domestic abuse programs lack important resources to serve victims and their families.
Share these facts about domestic violence with friends and family, and learn to recognize common signs of domestic abuse.
Common signs of domestic violence include:
- Bruising or injuries that may have been caused by choking, punching, or being thrown; black eyes and sprained wrists are common injuries suffered by victims
- Attempting to hide injuries with clothing or makeup
- Making excuses for the cause of injuries; repeatedly blaming injuries on clumsy behavior
- Having few friends or purposefully avoiding social interactions with coworkers or family
- Having to ask for permission to meet or talk with other people
- Having little or no money, no credit cards, and/or limited access to a car
Most relationships go through rough patches, and even happy couples argue now and then. Domestic violence is not a disagreement. Domestic violence is a pattern of abuse used to control the behavior of another.
Signs of domestic abuse can be shadowy, especially domestic abuse against men. If you or a loved one needs help getting out of an abusive relationship, contact the Colorado Coalition Against Domestic Violence (CCADV) for relief.
CCADV works with a network of advocacy programs throughout Colorado to aid appropriate and comprehensive responses to family violence, domestic violence, and dating violence. If you’re a victim of domestic abuse, the next call you should make is to Wolf Law.
If you’ve been charged with domestic violence, you need Wolf Law. If convicted of domestic violence, significant federally mandated restrictions and provisions related to gun ownership, security clearances, government employment, military service, and even deportation will follow.