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Types of Domestic Violence: How Texas Defines Domestic Assault

Posted in Criminal Defense, Texas Law on August 15, 2023

Understanding the different forms of domestic violence is important, especially in Texas, where the laws are quite specific. Domestic violence in Texas covers a wide range of actions from physical harm to emotional abuse and looks at the relationship between the individuals involved, the level of harm caused, and how often the abuse occurs. Grasping these distinctions is pivotal for anyone entangled in a domestic assault case. 

Knowing these categories can help individuals better handle legal situations, especially if they are facing charges. A lawyer from Freedom Law can help make sense of these laws, protect your rights, and provide strong representation in your case. Reaching out to Freedom Law for professional help can ease the process of dealing with domestic violence charges, making your legal journey less stressful and more manageable.

9 Texas Definitions for Different Types of Domestic Violence

Some of the most common types of domestic violence in Texas include the following:

Domestic Assault

In Texas, domestic assault is defined as an act of violence, even just a verbal threat, committed against a victim who is in an intimate relationship with the defendant. It’s crucial for this relationship to be proven in court. The law stipulates that the act is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault or is a threat that reasonably places the victim in fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault.

What separates domestic assault from other forms of domestic violence is its specific focus on physical harm or threats of physical harm, whereas domestic violence encompasses a broader spectrum of abusive behaviors, including emotional, psychological, and financial abuse.

For more information about domestic assault, you may benefit from working with a lawyer. An attorney from Mary E. Conn & Associates can help you decipher the law relating to your circumstances. If you want to retain support, call us now.

Aggravated Domestic Assault

Aggravated Domestic Assault in Texas is defined as a more severe form of domestic assault wherein significant harm is inflicted upon the victim or a deadly weapon is used during the assault. Should the assault with a deadly weapon result in serious bodily harm, the offense is escalated to a first-degree felony, which carries a more severe penalty, potentially including a life sentence. Serious bodily injury typically refers to injuries requiring hospitalization or surgery, such as broken bones, serious head injuries, or disfigurements.

Continuous Violence Against Family

Related to domestic assault, “continuous violence against family” is a potential charge in which the same assailant commits two acts of domestic assault within 12 months. Charges for one or both of these crimes are not necessary to receive an arrest for this type of domestic violence.

Technological Abuse

Technological Abuse in Texas is a modern facet of domestic violence where abusers use digital platforms like texting, social media, and smartphone tracking to harass, intimidate, or control their partners​1​​2​. This abuse aims to maintain power over the victim in an intimate relationship, extending traditional abusive behaviors into the digital realm.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse encompasses a range of actions, such as hitting, punching, kicking, and choking, among others, directed by the assailant towards the victim. A charge of physical abuse doesn’t necessitate the presence of serious bodily injury or the need for medical treatment. The assailant can be charged with physical abuse even in the absence of medical records documenting injury.

Psychological Abuse

Psychological abuse is primarily defined as behavior that causes fear to the victim or that the victim perceives as a threat or intimidation. This charge will most likely be made when the behavior is persistent and severe. Common behaviors within psychological abuse include threats of violence, preventing the victim from leaving, preventing or discouraging the victim from talking with or seeing others, or emotional blackmail.

Financial Abuse

Someone may be charged with financial abuse if they keep their spouse or partner from working. In some situations, the prevention of receiving an education may also constitute financial abuse.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is a form of domestic violence that includes several forms of unwanted touch. These can consist of rape or sexual assault, but other forms of physical contact that are sexual can also apply. Limitations on sexual rights may also constitute sexual abuse, such as not allowing someone to use birth control or access abortion and reproductive health services.

Emotional Abuse

A complicated form of abuse to prove, emotional abuse is often coupled with another form of domestic violence. Behaviors that lead to feelings of humiliation, extreme criticism, or specific severities of insults may constitute emotional abuse.

Mary E. Conn & Associates’s Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys Are Here to Help: Call Us Now

If you have been charged with domestic violence in Texas, understanding the legal definitions can be helpful. However, you don’t have to take legal action alone. Mary E. Conn & Associates’s domestic violence defense attorneys can support you in many ways. Our team of lawyers has extensive experience in tackling domestic violence cases and can provide valuable support in your time of need.

Since 1985, our lawyers have been supporting clients in need of protecting their rights and fighting for themselves. You can contact us to ask questions and schedule a case review and consultation. Connect with us by calling (713) 357-4190 or completing the contact form on our website.

CALL US TODAY 713-357-4190