Child Witnesses to Domestic Violence - Arkansas

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Circumstances That Constitute Witnessing

Citation: Ann. Code § 5-4-701

In criminal law: 'In the presence of a child' means in the physical presence of a child or knowing or having reason to know that a child is present and may see or hear an act.

Consequences

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 5-4-702; 5-4-703(a)(10)

Any person who commits a felony offense involving homicide, assault, battery, domestic battering, or assault on a family member or household member may be subject to an enhanced sentence of an additional term of imprisonment of not less than 1 year and not greater than 10 years if the offense is committed in the presence of a child. The enhanced portion of the sentence is consecutive to any other sentence imposed.

Any person who commits the offense of aggravated cruelty to a dog, cat, or equine may be subject to an enhanced sentence of an additional term of imprisonment not to exceed 5 years if the offense is committed in the presence of a child.

Any person convicted under this section is not eligible for early release on parole or community correction transfer for the enhanced portion of the sentence.

In addition to any other sentence, the court shall assess an additional fine of $100 for the following offenses if the finder of fact determines that the offense was committed against a child or in the presence of a child:

  • Domestic battering in the second or third degree
  • Aggravated assault on a family or household member
  • First-, second-, or third-degree assault on a family or household member