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The Law on Criminal Domestic Violence in SC effective June 4, 2015

If you were arrested on or after June 4, 2015, the new Criminal Domestic Violence laws will be
applied. If you were arrested before June 4, 2015, the new law does not apply; that means the
old law would apply.

Below is a summary of the new CDV law in SC (if you were arrested for CDV after June 4, 2015):

CDV 1st CDV 2nd CDV 3rd Domestic Violence of a High and
Degree Degree Degree Aggravated Nature
Classificati Felony Misdemea Misdemea Felony
on nor nor
Possible 0-10 0-3 years 0-90 days 0-20 years
jail time years
Possible $2,500- $1,000-
fine $5,000 $2,500
Court General General Magistrate, General Sessions
Municipal or
Sessions Sessions
General
Sessions

Definitions: Degrees of Domestic Violence (for arrests after June 4, 2015)

Degree versus Offense - Note the difference between Degrees and Offenses. You can be
arrested for SC Domestic Violence Second Degree but it may be your first Domestic Violence
offense.

SC Domestic Violence First Degree-

Victim and Accused are male and female and are either:
o Married; or
o Used to be married; or
o Live together; or
o Used to live together; or
o Have a child in common
Accused physically harmed the victim; OR
Accused threatened to physically harm the victim AND
o a reasonable person in the victims shoes would fear immediate harm (note that
one can be arrested for Domestic Violence without even physically harming the
victim- i.e. threats) AND
o Accused has the ability at that particular moment to physically harm the victim
Accused has two or more Domestic Violence (CDV or CDVHAN) convictions within the past
10 years; OR
Accused caused some serious injury on the victims body; OR
Accuseds actions could have caused some serious injury to the victims body (note that
actual injury does not have to happen)
Accused used a gun
Accused violated a Restraining Order/ Protective Order
Accused knew or should have known the victim was pregnant
A minor child saw or heard the event
Accused broke into a place where the victim was without permission (examples: Accused
was in the process of committing a robbery, burglary, theft, or kidnapping (note
kidnapping does not necessarily include kids- kidnapping can mean the adult victim was
not able to leave)
Accused chokes, smothers, or causes the Victim to not be able to breath
Accused blocks Victims access to cell phone, landline phone, or other electronic
communication device so that Victim cant call 911, EMS, or get help.

SC Domestic Violence Second Degree-

Victim and Accused are male and female and are either:
o Married; or
o Used to be married; or
o Live together; or
o Used to live together; or
o Have a child in common
Accused physically harmed the victim; OR
Accused threatened to physically harm the victim AND
o a reasonable person in the victims shoes would fear immediate harm (note that
one can be arrested for Domestic Violence without even physically harming the
victim- i.e. threats) AND
o Accused has the ability at that particular moment to physically harm the victim
Accused caused the Victims injuries
o Victim was unconscious; or
o Victims disfigured (temporarily or moderately); or
o Victim temporarily cant use arms, legs, toes, feet, fingers, etc. ; or
o Victims organs temporarily arent working; or
o Victim has to get general or local anesthesia because of injuries; or
o Victims bones are fractured; or
o Victims bones are dislocated; or
o Victim has to have medical treatment more than one time; or
o Victim has more than scratches, bruises, cuts, burns, or other minor injuries that
dont require alot of medical care
Accused has one domestic violence (CDV or CDVHAN) conviction on criminal record within
the past 10 years; and
Accused violated a Restraining Order/ Protective Order
Accused knew or should have known the victim was pregnant
A minor child saw or heard the event
Accused broke into a place where the victim was without permission (examples: Accused
was in the process of committing a robbery, burglary, theft, or kidnapping (note
kidnapping does not necessarily include kids- kidnapping can mean the adult victim was
not able to leave)
Accused chokes, smothers, or causes the Victim to not be able to breath
Accused blocks Victims access to cell phone, landline phone, or other electronic
communication device so that Victim cant call 911, EMS, or get help.

SC Domestic Violence Third Degree-

Victim and Accused are male and female and are either:
o Married; or
o Used to be married; or
o Live together; or
o Used to live together; or
o Have a child in common
Accused physically harmed the victim; OR
Accused threatened to physically harm the victim AND
o a reasonable person in the victims shoes would fear immediate harm (note that
one can be arrested for Domestic Violence without even physically harming the
victim- i.e. threats) AND
o Accused has the ability at that particular moment to physically harm the victim

Domestic Violence of a High and Aggravated Nature

Victim and Accused are male and female and are either:
o Married; or
o Used to be married; or
o Live together; or
o Used to live together; or
o Have a child in common
Accused physically harmed the victim; OR
Accused threatened to physically harm the victim AND
o a reasonable person in the victims shoes would fear immediate harm (note that
one can be arrested for Domestic Violence without even physically harming the
victim- i.e. threats) AND
o Accused has the ability at that particular moment to physically harm the victim
Victim at risk of death, serious, permanent disfigurement
Use of deadly weapon (note this doesnt have to actually be a weaponlike a gun or knife
it can be anything that can be used as a deadly weapon, like a pipe, a car, a hammer,
etc.)
Accused knew or should have known the victim was pregnant
A minor child saw or heard the event
Accused broke into a place where the victim was without permission (examples: Accused
was in the process of committing a robbery, burglary, theft, or kidnapping (note
kidnapping does not necessarily include kids- kidnapping can mean the adult victim was
not able to leave)
Accused chokes, smothers, or causes the Victim to not be able to breath
Accused blocks Victims access to cell phone, landline phone, or other electronic
communication device so that Victim cant call 911, EMS, or get help.