Child Witnesses to Domestic Violence - Ohio

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Circumstances That Constitute Witnessing

Citation: Rev. Code § 2929.01(LL)

In criminal law: An offense is 'committed in the vicinity of a child' if the offender commits the offense within 30 feet of or within the same residential unit as a child who is under age 18, regardless of whether the offender knows the age of the child or that the offense is being committed within 30 feet of or within the same residential unit as the child and regardless of whether the child actually views the commission of the offense.

Consequences

Citation: Rev. Code §§ 2929.12; 2929.17

If the offense of domestic violence or assault involves a person who was a family or household member at the time of the violation, and the offender committed the offense in the vicinity of one or more children who are not victims of the offense, and the offender or the victim of the offense is a parent, guardian, custodian, or person in loco parentis of one or more of those children, the following apply:

  • The sentencing court shall consider the offender's conduct to be more serious than conduct normally constituting the offense.
  • The offender also shall be required to obtain counseling.