Arrested for Domestic Violence but Didn't Start the Fight

Arrested for Domestic Violence But You Didn’t Start the Fight

In Arizona, being arrested for domestic violence is among the most overcharged types of offenses, and they carry significant penalties. Most domestic violence cases involve minor altercations between partners, spouses, or family members.

If the police are called on a report of potential domestic violence, they will arrest someone and charge them with a crime of domestic violence even if the victim doesn’t press charges.

The idea that a case will go away if the victim doesn’t press charges is a common misnomer. Prosecutors charge crimes, and it is not up to the victim to decide that the victim doesn’t press charges. You can be charged even if the victim in your case doesn’t want the case against you to go forward.

Being charged with a crime and arrested for domestic violence can subject you to stigma. In some cases, people are charged with this offense when they were not the person who started the fight.

If you are facing domestic violence charges when the alleged victim is the one who hit you first, you should speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer at the Shah Law Firm.

We are experienced in handling cases involving domestic violence charges and are prepared to help you if you’ve been arrested for domestic violence.

Domestic Violence in Arizona

Many people think that domestic violence is a separate crime. However, that is not the case. Under ARS 13-3601, domestic violence is an enhancement that attaches to other offenses based on the relationship the defendant has with the alleged victim.

Any of the following crimes can be charged as crimes of domestic violence:

  • Assault (misdemeanor or aggravated)
  • Harassment (misdemeanor or aggravated)
  • Child/ Vulnerable adult abuse
  • Interference with custody
  • Criminal damage
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Dangerous crime against a child
  • Violating a restraining order
  • Endangerment
  • Sexual assault
  • Kidnapping
  • Homicide offenses
  • Stalking
  • Surreptitiously recording or photographing someone
  • Intimidation/threats
  • Revenge porn
  • Unlawful imprisonment

Most domestic violence offenses involve minor disputes or altercations between partners, spouses, or close family members.

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How much does a DUI in Scottsdale cost?

How Much Does a Scottsdale DUI Cost? How a DUI Lawyer Can Reduce the Financial Burden

If you have been arrested or charged with a Scottsdale DUI, it’s critically important that you act as quickly as you can to ensure that the court knows you take the charges seriously.

But beyond that, it’s important to simply face the consequences, no matter how scary that might seem right now, because a DUI in Arizona will continue to follow you regardless of where you live, and could result in the loss of your driving privileges, even if you received a DUI in Arizona and live out of state

The good news is that you do not have to face it alone.

Attorney Arja Shah has made it her goal for the last 14 years to defend those charged with crimes in Scottsdale as well as all over the state, and has successfully done so for over 2,700 clients!

Fired for DUI in Arizona

How Much Does a Scottsdale DUI Cost, and Why?

The cost of a DUI in Scottsdale will vary depending on a few variables, but mainly, charges are determined by how many prior DUIs you have had in Arizona or elsewhere, depending on what information the court has access to.

Some basic cost guidelines are determined by the judge based on whether this is your first DUI, second DUI, or third DUI within 7 years/84 months. Penalties for any number of DUIs beyond three in a seven-year timeframe will be entirely decided by the judge. Here’s a breakdown of some costs you can expect:

1st DUI 2nd DUI or Extreme DUI 3rd DUI or Super Extreme DUI
Court costs $1,500 + $1,000 for ignition interlock + $500 for alcohol education $1,500–2,500 + $1,000 for ignition interlock + $500 for alcohol education $1,500–3,000 + $1,000 for ignition interlock + $500 for alcohol education
Fine $1,250 minimum $2,500 minimum $3,200 minimum
Jail time 10 days 30 days 45 days

In addition to the above items in the table, you will also be required to:

  • Use an ignition interlock system for as little as six months or as much as 18 months depending on how many DUIs you have had and how severe they were (extreme or super extreme DUIs in Arizona will carry longer penalties with ignition interlock). 
  • Attend alcohol education for as long as the judge decides
  • Purchase SR-22 insurance, which is about $3,000 per year for three years 
  • Be responsible for paying for the towing of your vehicle — a charge of $100 plus a mileage charge as well as a daily charge for storing your car in a tow lot, which can vary between $75–150 per day if you are unable to retrieve your car right away

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Job Loss Due To DUI

What a Second DUI in Arizona Within 7 Years Means?

If you are arrested for a second DUI in Arizona within seven years, you might think you know what to expect. However, getting a second DUI charge within seven years will subject you to much harsher penalties.

The consequences for a second Arizona DUI will depend on your blood alcohol concentration and other facts and circumstances surrounding the offense. 

Here is some information you should know about receiving a second DUI in Arizona and what you might expect from the criminal defense attorney at the Shah Law Firm.

What is a Second DUI in Arizona?

Under ARS 28-1381, you can face a second DUI in Arizona charge under the following circumstances:

  • You were impaired to the slightest degree by alcohol, drugs, or any intoxicating substance while driving or having actual physical control of a vehicle.
  • You drove or had actual physical control of a vehicle while your blood alcohol concentration was 0.08% or higher.
  • You drove or had actual physical control of a commercial vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04% or higher and had a commercial driver’s license (CDL).
  • You drove or had actual physical control of a vehicle with any amount of illegal drugs in your system.
  • A second DUI charge within seven years under this statute is a Class 1 misdemeanor. However, the penalties are more severe than they are for a first DUI charge.

Under ARS 28-1382, Arizona further classifies DUIs by impairment level as follows:

  • BAC of 0.08% to 0.149% – Regular DUI
  • BAC of 0.150% to 0.199% – Extreme DUI
  • BAC of 0.20% and Above – Super extreme DUI

The penalties for an extreme or super extreme DUI offense in Arizona are higher than they are for regular DUIs.

When you are facing a second extreme DUI or a second super-extreme DUI, the penalties will be even more severe.

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Arizona Gun Rights

What Arizona Gun Rights Do I Have if Convicted of a Crime?

Many people in Arizona are convicted of misdemeanors or felonies each year. Misdemeanor crimes are considered to be less severe than felony crimes.

In addition to the penalties you might face for a conviction, one type of collateral consequence that you might face is a loss of your civil rights, including your right to own or possess firearms.

Below is some information about the types of crimes that can lead to a loss of your Arizona gun rights and when or if it is possible for a Restoration of Gun Rights from the Shah Law Firm.

Can You Lose Your Arizona Gun Rights for a Misdemeanor Conviction?

Many types of misdemeanor crimes will not result in a loss of your civil rights, including your Arizona gun rights. However, if you are convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, you will lose your right to own or possess firearms. This is because of the federal Domestic Violence Offenders Act, which was passed by Congress in 1997 and amended the 1968 Gun Control Act.

This law is codified at 18 USC 921 et. seq. Under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9), it is unlawful for anyone who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence to buy, sell, own, or possess a firearm.

Even if you don’t have a misdemeanor or felony conviction, you can also lose your Arizona gun rights if you are the subject of a restraining order preventing you from contacting or harassing someone with whom you have had a domestic relationship.

Under 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(8), you cannot own, possess, purchase, or transport a firearm if you are the subject of a restraining order when the court finds that you pose a credible threat to the named victim or that prohibits you from making threats of force against the named victim.

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Memorial Day DUI on a Boat

Tips to Avoid Boating DUI/OUI Charges on Memorial Day DUI Weekend

The upcoming weekend means that the cooler days of spring are quickly ending. More people will be headed out to vacation destinations, popular nightlife spots, lakes and rivers, and concerts. This also means an increase in the Memorial Day DUI arrests.

While Memorial Day weekend can be a fun way to welcome the summer, it is also important for you to ensure that you avoid getting charged with a DUI on a boat or while driving. Many people head to popular spots where they consume alcohol while also participating in other events. This means that law enforcement authorities throughout the greater Phoenix area will be on alert and watching for impaired drivers.

Over Memorial Day weekend in 2021, the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety reported that 589 motorists were arrested for drunk driving or DUI on drugs.

Out of the people who were arrested, 138 were arrested for extreme or super-extreme DUIs with blood alcohol concentrations of 0.15% or higher. The state also reported that 157 people were arrested and charged with drugged driving. The total number of Memorial Day DUI arrests during the weekend in 2021 significantly increased compared to the 409 arrests in 2020, which Covid had an influence over.

Whether you are planning to attend a backyard barbecue, spend time with your family, head out on the town, or go to popular lakes or rivers, you can be sure that the police will be out in force to try to catch drunk drivers.

Below is some information you should be aware of during this Memorial Day holiday weekend from the Shah Law Firm.

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Arizona DUI Car Accident Lawyer

Is an Arizona DUI Car Accident a Misdemeanor or Felony?

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs that cause impairment is illegal in Arizona, even including recreational marijuana. These Arizona DUI laws are taken seriously because driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs increases the risk of being involved in a motor vehicle accident.

While most DUIs are Class 1 misdemeanors under ARS 12-1381, you can be charged with a felony DUI if you cause an accident in which someone is injured or killed while you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

If you face DUI car accident charges, you should consult an experienced Arizona DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible.

Potential Types of Charges for a DUI Car Accident

If you cause a drunk driving accident, you might face the following types of charges, depending on the circumstances:

Endangerment can be charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor; however, it can also be charged as a Class 6 felony when you are alleged to have placed someone else at imminent risk of serious injury or death. This means that you could face felony endangerment charges if you have a single-car accident with a passenger, even if no one was seriously injured, based on the risk of serious injury or death.

Following DUI accidents, aggravated assault, negligent homicide, vehicular manslaughter, and second-degree murder charges are felony offenses carrying lengthy prison sentences.

If you caused a DUI car accident in which someone was seriously injured or killed, you would likely face one or more of these types of charges in addition to your DUI charge. Since vehicles can be considered dangerous weapons in criminal charges involving DUI accidents, the cases can be classified as dangerous felony offenses.

In Arizona, a dangerous felony conviction requires a mandatory prison sentence without the option of probation.

How much prison time you might face for a felony charge following a drunk driving accident will depend on multiple factors. These factors include the specific offense of which you are convicted, the victim’s age, whether you have prior felony convictions, and whether the prosecutor alleged the offense as a dangerous felony.

Click to Learn More About Arizona Felony DUI Car Accident Charges …

Arizona Marijuana Laws 2022

Arizona Marijuana Laws and Penalties Updated for 2022

While Arizonans have had more than a year to get used to legalized recreational marijuana laws in the state, many remain unaware of some of the legal changes that have accompanied its legalization. People need to understand the effect of recreational marijuana on various criminal laws and the differences between the laws surrounding recreational vs. medical marijuana.

Even though it is legal for adults 21 and up to possess and consume small amounts of marijuana, people can still be charged with marijuana offenses if they do not follow the laws. 

An experienced criminal defense lawyer at the Shah Law Firm can help you understand these laws and what you should avoid preventing yourself from being charged with a marijuana-related crime in 2022.

How Legalized Recreational Marijuana Laws have Changed in Arizona?

During the 2020 election, Arizona voters passed Proposition 207, which resulted in the legalization of recreational marijuana. This bill came 10 years after voters passed Proposition 203 in the Nov. 2010 election, which legalized medical marijuana. Like the earlier medical marijuana law, Proposition 207 caused numerous changes to how marijuana possession is treated in the state.

Before recreational marijuana was legalized, people caught with any amount of marijuana under two pounds could be charged with a class 6 felony under ARS 13-3405. However, Proposition 207 created a new chapter in Title 36 of the Arizona Revised Statutes called the Responsible Adult Use of Marijuana.

This chapter includes multiple statutes that govern the recreational use of marijuana, including where it can be used, who can use it, the amounts that people can legally possess, and others.

Under ARS 36-2852, for example, adults ages 21 and older can legally possess up to six plants, five grams of marijuana concentrate, or one ounce of cannabis.

However, if you possess more than the above-listed legal amounts of marijuana, you can still face charges as follows:

  • More than one but less than 2.5 ounces as a first offense – Civil offense with a fine of $100 under ARS 36-2853
  • More than one but less than 2.5 ounces as a second offense – Petty offense that could result in eight hours of mandatory drug education
  • More than one but less than 2.5 ounces as a third offense – Class 1 misdemeanor carrying up to six months in jail
The Arizona marijuana laws are different if you are a certified medical marijuana user.

If you are caught with more than 2.5 ounces of marijuana but less than two pounds, you can still face Class 6 felony charges under ARS 13-3405. There are also restrictions on where you can smoke marijuana. Under these new laws, you are technically not allowed to smoke it in open public areas. While Arizonans can now legally grow marijuana plants, you must also follow the restrictions.

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Domestic Violence Charges During Holidays

Do Domestic Violence Charges Increase During the Holidays?

Many people think that incidents of domestic violence charges will spike during the holidays. The holidays can be stressful and cause people to take their anger out on those who are closest to them. Several factors can lead to domestic violence incidents during the holidays, including financial stress, unrealistic expectations, increased alcohol use, and being shut inside with immediate family members for extended periods.

During this holiday season, all of these factors are compounded by the impact of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and the added layers of stress and financial problems it has wrought. While domestic violence cases do happen, some people also lash out at their family members by filing false reports.

People who are facing domestic violence charges should talk to a domestic violence attorney at the Shah Law Firm as soon as possible.

Speak to Arizona Defense Attorney Arja Shah Now

We are Open and Available to answer any questions. Free consultations by phone or video chat.
Shah Law has successfully defended over 2,700 clients. We are on your side!

Increase in Domestic Violence Charges During the Holidays

The holidays bring a lot of added stress to families in Arizona. People can be overwhelmed when they have to plan holiday celebrations. They might also be facing increased financial stress and have unrealistic expectations of their experiences. Holidays can always be overwhelming. However, the 2020-2021 COVID-19 pandemic has added even more stress. Many families are struggling financially and simply do not have the means to celebrate in the way in which they would like.

According to data from the Phoenix Police Department, domestic violence homicides increased by 180% year-over-year during the first eight months of 2020 as compared to the same period in 2019. This demonstrates that people were already under significant stress even before the holiday season got started.

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Criminal Speeding or Arizona DUI in a Construction Zone

Arizona DUI in a School Zone, Construction Zone or Airport

Being charged with a DUI in Arizona can result in stiff penalties. However, you might face other consequences and additional charges if you are charged with a DUI in certain areas, including DUI in a school zone, construction zone, or airport.

Below is some information about DUI charges in these types of areas in Arizona.

DUI on Airport Property in Arizona

In most cases, driving under the influence is a state charge in Arizona. This means that most people will be tried for the offense in Municipal Court, Justice Court, or Superior Court and potentially be sentenced to serve jail time in the county jail. However, there are certain situations in which a DUI can be charged and tried in federal court. The potential penalties for a federal DUI are harsher than for a state DUI charge.

Under the US Code of Federal Regulations 36 CFR § 4.23, people can be charged with federal DUI offenses when they drive with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or higher; or when they are impaired to such a degree that they are incapable of driving by any amount of alcohol or drugs. If a person is arrested for a federal DUI in a state that has stricter laws, the penalties under state law will supersede the federal law.

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Arizona Ignition Interlock Device FAQs after a DUI

Top 10 Ignition Interlock Device FAQs after Phoenix DUI

When people are convicted of an Arizona DUI involving alcohol in Arizona, one of the penalties that they will face is the mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device breathalyzer in every vehicle that they drive.

How long people will be required to have these breathalyzer devices installed in their vehicles will depend on the degree of DUI, if it is a misdemeanor or felony, on the number of past DUI convictions you have on your record within the past seven years and your blood alcohol concentration at the time of your arrest.

Below are the Top 10 ignition interlock device frequently asked questions that we receive at the Shah Law Firm about ignition interlock devices.

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Contact Arja Today to Learn How She Can Help You!

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