Domestic Violence with a Prior Conviction(s)

Domestic Violence with a Prior Conviction(s)

A domestic violence conviction is obviously a serious matter.  Persons convicted for domestic violence offenses face criminal time and other negative consequences. But, these consequences only increase for recidivist (or repeat) offenders.  If you have been arrested for domestic violence and have a prior conviction, then you need to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney, such as Nashville-based attorney Philip Clark.  He is an experienced domestic violence lawyer who can help if you are charged in Nashville or in Middle Tennessee. 

Tennessee Law on Domestic Assault

A person commits domestic assault who commits an assault as defined under state law against a domestic abuse victim, such as a current or former spouse or other close relative.[1]  The punishment for a first-time offense for domestic assault is either a Class A or Class B misdemeanor.[2]   Subsequent convictions for domestic assault carry even more significant criminal penalties, including increased fines and more jail time.[3]  For example, a second conviction for domestic assault carries mandatory imprisonment of at least 30 days in the county workhouse and up to 11 months and 29 days imprisonment.[4]

            A third conviction carries even more severity. It results in a fine of between $1,100 and $5,000 and confinement between 90 days and 11 months and 29 days.[5]  However, if a third offense involves a minor child or if the multiple offenses involve a current or former spouse, the penalty can rise to the level of a Class E felony.[6]  There is an exception if the new offense takes place more than 10 years after a prior domestic assault conviction.[7]

            Criminal penalties only increase once the type of crime committed increases.  For example, if a person commits a domestic violence offense that is classified as aggravated assault[8], rather than assault, the penalties are more severe.   Tennessee’ aggravated assault statute imposes additional penalties and requirements if the victim is a domestic abuse victim.[9]  If you face criminal charges involving domestic violence, then you must secure the services of a criminal defense attorney, such as Nashville-based lawyer Philip Clark. 

Need for an Attorney

Needless to say, if you are charged with a domestic violence charge, such as assault or aggravated assault, then you need an experienced criminal defense attorney.  The need for an attorney only increases if you have prior domestic violence convictions.   The attorney may be able to make a variety of defenses, such as a self-defense claim or challenge the veracity of the alleged victim’s accusations.     

Nashville-based attorney Philip N. Clark of PNC Law is just such an experienced attorney.  He is a zealous advocate on behalf of his clients.  Furthermore, he has nearly twenty (20) years of experience as a former Metro police officer.  He may be able to assert a variety of defenses on your behalf.  If you face more domestic violence charges, contact Nashville-based attorney Philip Clark at (615) 678-1033 or e-mail him at

[1] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(a)(1)-(6).

[2] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-101.

[3] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(c).

[4] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(c)(2)

[5] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(c)(3).

[6] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(c)(3)

[7] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-111(c)(4)

[8] Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-102.

[9] See, e.g., Tenn. Code Ann. §39-13-102(e)(4)