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Domestic Violence

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False or exaggerated accusations of domestic violence in Tampa are all too common. In fact, in some cases accusations of domestic violence have been weaponized, and used as leverage in an argument or dispute, regardless of how truthful the allegations are. Accusations of domestic violence can often be emotion-based, or can be influenced by the accuser being under the influence of a controlled substance or alcohol. In fact, these accusations have even been used as leverage in divorce and child custody court cases.

Regardless of the circumstances of the accusation, a domestic violence charge in Tampa is nothing to scoff at. Any form of domestic violence is a very serious charge and a conviction can not only result in incarceration, but even a lifetime ban of possessing a firearm, as well as the loss of other civil rights.

Domestic Violence Attorney in Tampa, FL

If you or a loved one have been arrested for domestic violence, this is a serious charge and contacting an experienced Tampa domestic violence lawyer is critical. A conviction for domestic violence in Florida can result in jail time, community service, fines, and loss of civil rights, not to mention the cost to an individuals reputation. Consequences can further spill into custody hearings and impact your ability to get a good job, good housing, and much more. Hiring a defense attorney in Tampa as soon as possible will help you protect your rights and ensure the best possible outcome for your case.

The Elsea Law Firm provides criminal defense in Tampa, Hillsborough County, and the surrounding areas in Florida.

What is Domestic Violence?

Florida Statute § 741.28 describes domestic violence as an assault, battery, kidnapping, or other crime committed by a member of a household or family that results in injury or death to another member of the family or household. The law itself specifies that the household member may include a spouse, relative, person with whom you’ve had a child, or even a past spouse. If the defendant and “victim” live in the same household or belong to the same felony, they may be charged with domestic violence.

Common Domestic Violence Charges in Tampa


  • Florida Statute § 784.011 
  • Definition: the intentional act of violence, or threat to cause violence, to another individual
  • Second-Degree Misdemeanor

Aggravated Assault

Florida Statute § 784.021

Definition: Assault involving a deadly weapon or intention of committing a felony

Third-Degree Felony


  • Florida Statute § 784.03
  • Definition: touching another person against their will or intentionally causing harm to another individual.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor
  • *Third-Degree felony if defendant has prior conviction

Felony Battery

  • Florida Statute § 784.041
  • Definition: touching a person against their will and causing significant injury or disability
  • Third-Degree Felony

Domestic Battery by Strangulation

Florida Statutes § 784.041(2)(a)

Definition: choking a family or household member or person with whom you are in a relationship and doing great harm against that person’s will.

Third-Degree Felony

Aggravated Battery

Florida Statute § 784.045

Definition: the use of a deadly weapon that causes great harm or disability to another, or if the victim is pregnant.

Second-Degree Felony


Florida Statute § 784.048

Definition: the following, cyberstalking, or harassing of an individual against their will

First-Degree Misdemeanor

What is a Domestic Violence Protective Order?

When an individual believes they are about to become a victim of domestic violence or assault, they may petition the court for a protective order. This is done through the potential-victim filing a motion with the court directed at the defendant.

Temporary injunctions provide quick protection for the victims. Upon filing the motion, a hearing is scheduled to be heard as soon as possible due to the time-sensitive nature of the claims. If the judge were to find that there is, in fact, a danger presented to the potential victim, they may issue the protective order.

This order will have specific parameters which prohibit the defendant from interacting with the potential-victim. If this order were to be violated, criminal charges may be brought in the form of a violation of a domestic violence injunction which is a first-degree misdemeanor.

Domestic Violence Penalties in Florida

  • Second-Degree Misdemeanor
    • Up to 60 days in jail
    • Fines totaling up to $500
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor
    • Up to one year in jail
    • Fines totaling up to $1000
  • Third-Degree Felony
  • Second-Degree Felony
    • Up to 15 years in Florida Department of Corrections
    • Fines totaling up to $10,000
  • First-Degree Felony
    • Up to 30 years in Florida Department of Corrections
    • Fines totaling up to $10,000

Florida and Tampa Domestic Violence Resources

The Spring of Tampa Bay

City of Tampa Domestic Violence Assistance

USF Domestic Violence Shelters

Crisis Center of Tampa Bay

Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer in Tampa, FL

Accusations of domestic violence are exceptionally serious, and can have consequences that extend far beyond the court room. If you or a loved one have been accused of domestic violence, hiring an experienced domestic violence defense attorney in Tampa to begin working for you and defending your rights as soon as possible is imperative. The Elsea Law Firm has tremendous experience defending against accusations of domestic violence. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.

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