She pressed charges for grabbing her and shaking her

I did not hit her. I grabbed her arm and shook her, because I was made she stole the money. A while back I pushed her arm and head. Is this domestic violence? If so what harm did I do, since I did not hit her., etc, etc

Asked on July 5, 2009 under Criminal Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In California, domestic violence is specifically defined through the state's Domestic Violence Prevention Act as ''threatened or actual abuse from someone with whom you have had a close relationship".  This abuse can be "physical, sexual or verbal.'' 

Under California statute, abuse is defined as: intentionally or recklessly causing or attempting to cause bodily injury, sexual assault, or placing a person in reasonable fear of imminent serious bodily injury.

I think that you can see that your actions constitute a criminal act under the  law.  You do not have to cause serious injury to be convicted of Domestic Violence.

This offense is taken very seriously in the California Court system.  You need to consult with an attorney immediately; especially in your case because this is the second time that this has happened.


M.S., Member, Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Although I do not practice law in the state of California, here are my initial impressions.  It appears as if you are asking whether your conduct constitutes a crime.  The short answer is yes.  Anytime you grab, shake, or push someone, it can constitute several different crimes, such as assault and/or battery.  In some states, grabbing someone for more than a few seconds can even constitute kidnapping.  It is important to remember that harm can be inflicted in ways other than hitting a person (i.e., it is possible to give someone a concussion just from shaking them, or to give someone a deep bruise by grabbing them, for example).  If you have been arrested, or feel that you may be arrested, as a result of these incidents, I strongly suggest that you consult with and/or retain a criminal defense attorney at your earliest convenience.

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