Domestic Battery – Penal Code 243(e)(1)

Penal Code 243(e)(1) is a misdemeanor offense with no major injuries resulting against a spouse, cohabitant, or fellow parent. When a person is charged with Penal Code 243(e)(1), the standard bail amount is $20,000. If the person does not post bail, they will remain in custody until his or her arraignment.  This means, if a person gets arrested on a Thursday over a long holiday weekend, he or she will remain in custody until the next court date which will be Monday.  It is always best to post bail.  Posting bail will allow a delay in criminal charges from being filed and allow you to hire an attorney to provide the missing facts to the District Attorney or City Attorney to get your case rejected or set for an informal hearing.  Contact Arthur Khachatourians for further discussion regarding prefiling intervention

When the defendant is charged with battery pursuant to Penal Code section 243(e)(1), the People must prove each element of the crime:

1.The defendant willfully and unlawfully touched the complaining witness in a harmful or offensive manner; AND

2 The complaining witness was the spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, fiancé, girlfriend or boyfriend, a person with whom the defendant currently has, or previously had, a dating or engagement relationship, or the mother or father of his or her child; and

3.The defendant did not act in self-defense or in defense of someone else.

Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on purpose. It is not required that he or she intend to break the law, hurt someone else, or gain any advantage. Unlike Penal Code 273.5, a traumatic condition is not required for Penal Code 243e1.

Touching – The slightest touching can be enough to commit a battery if it is done in a rude or angry way. Making contact with another person, including through his or her clothing, is enough. The touching does not have to cause pain or injury of any kind. The touching can be done indirectly by causing an object [or someone else] to touch the other person.   

Cohabitants – The term cohabitants means two unrelated persons living together for a substantial period of time, resulting in some permanency of the relationship. Factors that may determine whether people are cohabiting include, but are not limited to, (1) sexual relations between the parties while sharing the same residence, (2) sharing of income or expenses, (3) joint use or ownership of property, (4) the parties’ holding themselves out as (husband and wife/domestic partners), (5) the continuity of the relationship, and (6) the length of the relationship.  A person may cohabit simultaneously with two or more people at different locations, during the same time frame, if he or she maintains substantial ongoing relationships with each person and lives with each person for significant periods.

Dating Relationship – The term dating relationship means frequent, intimate associations primarily characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement independent of financial considerations.

Mr. Khachatourians has represented numerous individuals charged with Penal Code 243e1 and has successfully dismissed, reduced, and rejected the charges.  If you are charge with Penal Code section 243e1, contact the Khachatourians Law Group for a defense consultation.