Actor Mel Gibson has entered a plea of no contest to Domestic Battery in California. Gibson will receive a probation sentence with no jail time. He will have to complete a batterer’s program while on probation.
If you are arrested for Domestic Battery in Jacksonville and you enter a plea to that charge, there are some minimum penalties under Florida law. The first is you must serve 5 days in jail. This requirement is often waived if it is your first arrest. The other mandatory punishment is 12 months probation to complete the Batterers’ Intervention Program. This is a 26 week class. The class consists of mandatory once-a-week sessions, payment of fees, and homework. If you miss too many days or do not complete the homework to the Salvation Army’s satisfaction, you can be discharged from the program. If you are thrown out, this will violate your domestic battery probation and you can be arrested.
Another part of domestic battery probation is contact with the victim. If the victim of the domestic battery wants to have contact with you, the court will issue a “no violent contact” order for probation. That means you may see, call, and otherwise contact the victim, but you may not touch them against their will. If the victim claims to be scared of you, the judge can issue a “no contact” order. This means that for the term of your probation, if you contact the victim in ANY way, your probation can be violated.