Spousal abuse is a silent killer. While many domestic violence cases are portrayed in movies, the reality is much more dire.
This article aims to shed light on the significance of spousal abuse as a crime in Michigan, examining the legal framework, support services, and the collective efforts to protect survivors and promote a culture of empathy and justice.
In Michigan, spousal abuse, also called domestic violence or intimate partner violence, is taken very seriously. The law defines it as any assaultive behavior or threat of assault committed by one spouse against another. Spousal abuse is not limited to physical violence; it can also encompass emotional, psychological, and sexual abuse.
Michigan’s legal framework provides robust protection for victims of spousal abuse. The Michigan Penal Code, under Section 750.81, explicitly criminalizes domestic violence. This offense is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment, fines, probation, or a combination of these penalties, depending on the severity of the abuse and the offender’s criminal history. Additionally, Michigan recognizes personal protection orders (PPOs) as a powerful tool to safeguard victims by legally prohibiting contact or proximity from the abuser.
The specific provision of the law is as follows:
Section 750.81d – Assaulting, battering, resisting, obstructing, opposing person performing duty; felony; penalty; other violations; consecutive terms; definitions
(1) Except as provided in subsections (2), (3), and (4), an individual who assaults, batters, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than two years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both.
(2) An individual who assaults, batters, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties, causing a bodily injury requiring medical attention or medical care to that person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than four years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both.
(3) An individual who assaults, batters, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties, causing severe impairment of a body function of that person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both.
(4) An individual who assaults, batters, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties, causing the death of that person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 20 years or a fine of not more than $20,000.00, or both.
(5) This section does not prohibit an individual from being charged with, convicted of, or punished for any other violation of law that is committed by that individual while violating this section.
(6) A term of imprisonment imposed for a violation of this section may run consecutively to any term imposed for another violation arising from the same transaction.
(7) As used in this section:
(a) “Obstruct” includes the use or threatened use of physical interference or force or a knowing failure to comply with a lawful command.
(b) “Person” means any of the following:
(i) A police officer of this state or a political subdivision of this state, including, but not limited to, a motor carrier officer or capitol security officer of the department of state police.
(ii) A police officer of a junior college, college, or university who is authorized by the governing board of that junior college, college, or university to enforce state law and the rules and ordinances of that junior college, college, or university.
(iii) A conservation officer of the Department of natural resources or the Department of environmental quality.
(iv) A conservation officer of the United States department of the interior.
(v) A sheriff or deputy sheriff.
(vi) A constable.
(vii) A peace officer of a duly authorized police agency of the United States, including, but not limited to, an agent of the secret service or department of justice.
(viii) A firefighter.
(ix) Any emergency medical service personnel described in section 20950 of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.20950.
(x) An individual engaged in a search and rescue operation as that term is defined in section 50c.
(c) “Serious impairment of a body function” means that term as defined in section 58c of the Michigan vehicle code, 1949 PA 300, MCL 257.58c.
In the coming part of the series, you will see other facts about this crime.
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The article that you have read is based on general applications of the law. It is not legal advice and should not be construed as any legal consultation with the firm. No client-attorney relationship is created when you read the articles we have provided.
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