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What is domestic violence in Wisconsin?

Battery is a classification of criminal charge that involves some sort of physical harm or threat of physical harm to an alleged victim. Within that realm, such actions that happen between family members or those living together can result in domestic violence charges. Wisconsin residents may think they know what constitutes domestic battery but they may not be correct. For example, actual physical harm does not need to result for law enforcement to get involved.

The Wisconsin State Legislature outlines some of the things that constitute domestic violence against a spouse, ex-spouse or partner in the same home. These include: 

  • Any acts which are intended to cause physical pain to another person.
  • Any physical impairment of a condition that is intentionally caused.
  • Any acts which results in the reasonable fear that physical harm could result.

Law enforcement professionals are allowed to make the determination to place a person under arrest for domestic assault crimes based upon multiple criteria such as the history of all involved parties, any injuries noted, witness statements, any threats made, the level of fear that may be perceived and whether or not any actions were taken in self-defense. Additionally, arrests can only be made up to 28 days after an alleged action took place.

Convictions for domestic violence charges can result in serious penalties that can include jail time, probation and restraining orders. Defendants can even lose their right to bear arms for life. This information is not intended to provide legal advice but general information regarding domestic violence in Wisconsin.

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