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Crimes Against A Person


Georgia law defines domestic violence as any battery, assault, stalking, criminal damage to property, unlawful restraint or criminal trespass between two past or present spouses, parents of the same child, parents & children, stepparents & stepchildren, foster parents & foster children, or other persons living or formerly living in the same household (O.C.G.A. 19-13-1).   Only one-third of domestic violence cases in the United States are reported.   Almost one in four women and one in six men are victims of domestic violence in the U.S., however, the actual figures may be higher due to the large number of cases that go unreported.
The victim-witness assistants of the Newton County District Attorney’s Office are trained to understand the cycle of violence and to provide understanding, empathy and resources to victims of domestic violence. Because, domestic violence victims typically have needs that go far beyond what the criminal justice system can provide, our victim-witness assistants can provide information on psychological, medical, and economic resources.
It is important to understand that in Georgia, the State is the prosecutor of a domestic violence case, not the victim.  Often, because of the cycle of violence, domestic violence victims do not want to see their abuser punished.  While the prosecuting attorney always takes into consideration the victim’s feelings on punishment, based upon the extent of the abuse, the strength of the evidence, and the criminal history of the abuser, the State may chose to prosecute these cases despite the requests of the victim. 
All domestic violence cases are scheduled for a preliminary hearing in magistrate court prior to a charging decision being made.  The domestic violence victim, law enforcement officer, and any other witnesses will be subpoenaed to court.  The failure of a victim to appear for the preliminary hearing will not result in dismissal of the charges.  Instead, the preliminary hearing is an excellent opportunity to speak to the prosecutor and victim-witness assistant about the case, and to relay any concerns the victim has about the case.




Domestic Violence Brochure Domestic Violence Brochure

Medical Release Medical Release

Family Violence Temporary  Protective Order Family Violence Temporary Protective Order

Stalking Temporary Protective Order Stalking Temporary Protective Order

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 29 April 2009 )
 
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