Without mincing words, the bottom-line reality concerning domestic violence in Illinois is that allegations of wrongdoing and subsequent criminal charging/conviction can relate to an impressively broad range of conduct.
Police in all areas of the state routinely respond to home-based reports alleging misconduct by an abuser that spans wide-ranging behavior. An accusation might focus centrally on a claim of physical assault against a spouse or partner. Child abuse might be at issue. Alternatively, a claim might involve verbal abuse, intimidation, forced isolation, undue economic control, stalking or myriad other allegations. Domestic violence charges comprise a lengthy bullet list of possibilities.
Moreover, they are frequently underscored by complexity and a high degree of uncertainty regarding the material facts at issue. Arriving police officers often grapple with a “What actually happened here?” question following their response to a domestic abuse claim.
We prominently note that confusion and ambiguity on our website at the established St. Clair County criminal defense firm of Sullivan Law in Fairview Heights. We stress therein that, “Domestic disputes are always difficult in that they usually involve a complex set of facts.”
Moreover, it is often the case that investigators and law enforcers are hard pressed to even correctly identify the people ostensibly involved in a dispute. An abuse claim is even further complicated in most instances by a surrounding atmosphere that is immediately tense and volatile. Such factors can make measured and accurate assessments unduly challenging.
We’ll have more to say about domestic violence in an upcoming blog post, with a specific focus being devoted to so-called “Orders of Protection.”