People who are involved in a domestic relationship may have a verbal fight once and awhile. In fact, it is fairly common for couples to bicker with one another. However, when the altercation turns physical, someone may be arrested on domestic violence charges. Earlier this year, the Governor of Wisconsin approved three bills that will ultimately strengthen laws involving domestic violence, according to a report published in Twincities.com.
According to the National Institute of Justice, Wisconsin has a mandatory arrest statute for people who are suspected of committing a domestic violence crime; however, it is up to the discretion of the responding officer to make that determination. One bill that was signed into law requires law enforcement to submit a report if they fail to arrest anyone after responding to a domestic violence incident.
Another new law allows prosecutors to add charges of threatening to stalk or stalking to a domestic violence case, according to the report. Prosecutors are also able to use an accused offender’s history of misconduct for the past 10 years as evidence in a domestic violence case. Some opponents argue that using a person’s past history, even in cases where they were never actually convicted of a crime, should not be allowed as evidence in court.
Under the Federal Gun Control Act, people who have a restraining order issued against them are prohibited from owning, receiving or purchasing a firearm. The act also bans those who have been convicted of a domestic violence crime from firearm possession. The third domestic violence law passed in the state takes the gun act one step further, requiring domestic violence offenders to surrender their firearms to the sheriff’s office, according to the Wisconsin state Department of Justice.
In a domestic violence situation, there are two sides to every story. Those accused of domestic violence should be aware of the various laws that are enforced in Wisconsin.