(a) For the purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) STRANGULATION. Intentionally causing asphyxia by closure or compression of the blood vessels or air passages of the neck as a result of external pressure on the neck.
(2) SUFFOCATION. Intentionally causing asphyxia by depriving a person of air or by preventing a person from breathing through the inhalation of toxic gases or by blocking or obstructing the airway of a person, by any means other than by strangulation.
(b) A person commits the crime of domestic violence by strangulation or suffocation if he or she commits an assault with intent to cause physical harm or commits the crime of menacing pursuant to Section 13A-6-23, by strangulation or suffocation or attempted strangulation or suffocation and the victim is a current or former spouse, parent, step-parent, child, step-child, any person with whom the defendant has a child in common, a present household member, or a person who has or had a dating relationship with the defendant. For the purpose of this section, a household member excludes non-romantic or non-intimate co-residents, and a dating relationship means a current or former relationship of a romantic or intimate nature characterized by the expectation of affectionate or sexual involvement by either party.
(c) Domestic violence by strangulation or suffocation is a Class B felony punishable as provided by law.
Last modified: May 3, 2021