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Domestic Violence is taken most seriously in all criminal law. Your prosecutor will be looking for the cycle of violence when determining charges and punishments. Cycle of violence is a key factor in a domestic violence case. To understand how you can get your charges reduced or dismissed, you need to prove that there is no cycle of violence involved.

Cycle of Violence

The cycle of violence is a pattern that is often found in Domestic Violence cases. The pattern is as follows:

  1. Incident – Some type of abuse occurs (physical/sexual/emotional)
  2. Tension Builds – The abuser starts to get angry and abuse may begin. The victim may feel the need to keep the abuser calm. Tension keeps increasing.
  3. Making-Up – The abuser may apologize for abuse and promise not to repeat the abuse. The abuser may claim that the victim is the cause of abuse or even deny any abuse.
  4. Calm – The abuser acts like the abuse never happened. Some promises made in #3 may be met. Victim may hope that the abuse is over until it happens again.

This cycle may occur over and over again in an abusive relationship, ranging from a few hours to even a year or more to complete. Unfortunately, this is common in many relationships in San Diego.

But not all domestic violence will fit the cycle. Sometimes, gradually stages 3 and 4 disappear. However, this can help in understanding why a witness may be changing their story.

For every case of domestic violence, there is another case of domestic violence without cycle of violence in their history. This is a grey area because someone may tell the police that, “We fight all the time” or “This time things became really ugly”. Sometimes, this is interpreted as history of domestic violence or cycle of violence. This may make the prosecution feel that there is more evidence to issue charges or give harsher punishments. In such cases, there is very less likelihood of making reductions.

Hence, the best person to go to for advice is an experienced San Diego domestic violence attorney who can tell you whether the charges can be reduced or dismissed and how.

To learn more or to consult the top San Diego criminal defense, domestic violence and DUI attorney, call the Law Offices of Kerry L. Armstrong at 619.234.2300 TODAY. Highly skilled San Diego criminal defense attorneys will fight on every front, from the moment of the arrest.


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Kerry L. Armstrong

Attorney Kerry Armstrong opened up his law firm, the Law Offices of Kerry L. Armstrong, APLC, in June 2007. In 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 Mr. Armstrong was selected for inclusion in the California Super Lawyers list, an honor only awarded to 5% of the nation’s attorneys. In 2017, he was also selected for the Super Lawyers Top 50 in San Diego list. In 2014, he was selected as a Top Attorney by Los Angeles Magazine. Additionally, Mr. Armstrong was also named as a Top Attorney by the San Diego Business Journal in 2014.

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