Defense of a Domestic Violence Charge
A very common criminal charge in this region is domestic violence battery. People are arrested for this nearly every day. Domestic violence is complex and very different than other kinds of criminal charges. Because of intense social reaction to truly terrible cases of barbaric abuse, the law in this area has developed to treat even the most minor incident quite seriously. Indeed, a police callout for a domestic disturbance is almost guaranteed to result in at least one arrest.
The degree of the crime, felony or misdemeanor, is determined by such things as the harm caused to the victim, whether weapons of any kind were used, whether strangulation was alleged to be involved, and whether the alleged victim was severely injured, pregnant, elderly, or disabled.
The penalties are very serious. Even a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction comes with weapons restrictions, jail or probation, fines, court costs, classes, work related repercussions, and possible child custody and visitation implications. If coupled with a domestic violence injunction or no contact order, with or without a GPS ankle device, the charge can limit the defendant's access to his or her home, vehicle, and stuff for many, many months. I know this because I have many years of experience handling domestic violence cases.
For a while in the military, I was a first-responder to these kinds of cases. I was the on-scene decision maker for many dozens of domestic violence callouts. I made the quick analysis of what most likely happened, spoke with the accused and the alleged victim, made the arrest or separation order, then managed the cases with further investigation all the way through punishment, treatment, reunification, and follow-up. Due to my field experience I was selected to serve as a subject matter expert for the 2000 Department of Defense Domestic Violence Task Force.
All that said, while I've seen terrible cases of domestic violence, with severely injured victims, I've also seen plenty of cases where the supposed 'injuries' were so slight that they couldn't even be documented. The arrest and charge often occur when one or both people involved have been drinking, there is a kerfuffle, the police are called, often by third parties, and there is an accusation of some degree of violence of some kind. The facts are often sketchy or indeterminable. Sometimes the accusation is nothing more than a comment during an explanation of what the fight is about. In many cases the alleged victim does not want the person arrested to be taken away, or punished at all.
Conversely, I've also seen self-inflicted or old wounds used to falsely accuse someone to establish a paper trail the 'victim' can use to gain favorable treatment in family court such as in custody matters or determining who gets the house during pre-divorce separation. I take domestic violence seriously and feel that untruthful allegations undermine a valuable system created for victims of abuse. Being accused of domestic violence can result in the loss of parental rights and criminal charges. Sadly, it happens.
What to expect
As an attorney, I've handled many domestic violence criminal cases through our local court system. As with all cases we handle at Warrior Law, we take a very non-judgmental approach. Only you and the other party know what really happened. Our position is to guide you, the accused, through the system and to hold the state to its fundamental obligation to support all criminal charges with evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, or to work toward a mutually agreeable resolution of the case.
At our first meeting, we will discuss your case in detail, and between the two of us, determine what the Goal of Representation will be. In a domestic violence case, that can be anything from a full acquittal at trial, dropped charges if possible, or to mitigate the harm to you after a situation got out of hand, such as by limiting punishment through a guilty plea to a reduced charge, or diversions from prosecution in exchange for voluntary completion of the Domestic Violence Intervention Program, or anger management. In any case, the incident of arrest has happened, and it can't easily be undone. I'm here to get you through the rest of it the very best that we can.
Payment for criminal charge defense is a flat fee paid upfront and is determined case by case at the end of our first, completely FREE, meeting. Every case and Goal of Representation is different, therefore, so is the price. Cases are best managed from the very beginning. Please call me as soon as possible after the unfortunate circumstance happens. I make lots of jail visits. All communication between the accused and us is strictly confidential.