Anyone who has been falsely accused of domestic violence needs to immediately retain an experienced and aggressive criminal defense attorney to fight for them.
Prosecutors rarely dismiss charges after a warrant’s issuing a warrant or an arrest has taken place. An excellent criminal defense lawyer can immediately begin building a strong case to get your charges dismissed or create a winning argument to the jury.
Your attorney will do this by gathering a copy of the police report, any video surveillance, or audio recordings around and by interviewing witnesses.
The First Thing To Do When Facing Charges
If there’s a warrant for your arrest, you need to gather money to retain a lawyer and to pay your bond. You can call the courthouse where your warrant has been issued and ask them how much your bond is. You can also ask them if you can turn yourself in at the courthouse or if you need to turn yourself in at jail.
If the courthouse says you can turn yourself in there, find out if you can directly do your arraignment right after you turn yourself in. If you have to report to jail, find out if they will be doing a video arraignment. If the jail is doing an arraignment by video, ask the guard when is the best time to turn yourself in so you can post bail and be released as soon as possible. If you have to turn yourself in at jail, you may not have your arraignment by video. In that case, you will be booked, and after you post your bond, you will be released.
Cease all contact with the accuser immediately. Anything you say can and will be used against you. If you continue to have contact with your accuser, you may violate your bond condition and face additional charges.
Once you are out on bond, make sure you understand your bond conditions. Failure to understand and follow these conditions can lead to you end up in jail for the duration of your case.
Are False Accusations Rare?
False allegations happen all the time. A lot of the false accusations happen during a divorce. Other false allegations arise because the couple has been drinking heavily or abusing drugs. The ending of a romantic relationship also brings about a lot of false claims of domestic violence by the bitter ex, who is upset at the other party for ending the relationship.
Attacking The Prosecutors Case
Prosecutors have to prove every charge beyond a reasonable doubt. Every charge has elements of the crime. Every aspect of the crime, be it intent, actually committing a particular act, or the age of the victim, has to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
In a domestic violence case, the following elements must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
That an assault or battery took place on a:
- Former spouse
- A person residing or having resided in the same household as the victim
- A person having a child in common with the victim.
- A Person who the defendant had a dating relationship with
- And the defendant intended to commit the assault or battery
One successful way to attack the prosecutor’s case is to show that an assault or battery never occurred.
For example, alleged victims sometimes lie about being assaulted. If there is evidence of an assault, such as an injury, winning a domestic violence case can be difficult.
Another way to defeat a prosecutor’s case is by showing the offensive contact was accidental. If a person trips and knocks someone over, an assault has not happened because the offensive contact must be done intentionally.
Another successful defense against the prosecutor’s case is that while the victim did suffer an assault, a battery or both and the defendant was not the one responsible. The offensive contact was caused by someone other than the defendant.
If a domestic violence case comes down to just the word of the victim versus the defendant, a prosecutor knows full well that they may lose the case. Prosecutors will try to find additional evidence to boost their case, but many times these cases come down to the word of the accuser versus the word of the accused.
If the person assaulted is not a spouse, former spouse, resident, a person with whom the accused has had a child or someone who the defendant had a dating relationship with, the prosecutor will not be able to win a domestic violence charge. There are times where a person may have been friends with someone but never dated them. In these cases, if offensive contact took place, the prosecutor should charge someone with assault and battery. If the prosecutor tries to convict someone for committing domestic violence against a friend, an experienced defense attorney will use this evidence to defeat the charge.
Self Defense is an affirmative defense to domestic violence allegations. An affirmative defense is a set of facts that, if proven right by the defendant, will defeat the prosecutor’s claim of unlawful conduct. An affirmative defense of self-defense is a justification for the actions of the defendant. This defense is different than other ones used by criminal defense attorneys. The defendant in self-defense cases admits to breaking the law, but because there was a good reason for it, the law excuses the defendant from criminal liability for the actions taken.
This defense is one that first responders hear all the time. They are trained to make a judgment call in figuring out who was the aggressor. Once they have done that, they will arrest the aggressor in a domestic violence dispute.
At trial, the defendant is allowed to present evidence was not the principle aggressor and therefore, should be excused for using physical force to stop the other person’s assaultive behavior against the defendant.
What Happens To The Victim If The Allegation Is Proven False?
Typically nothing happens if the allegation is proven to be false. If the accuser had a genuine concern when they claimed to be attacked and the investigation finds no evidence, nothing will likely happen to the accuser.
If a person is making a false allegation with the desire to cause the opposing party distress and harm, prosecutors may charge the person with filing a false police report. If the accuser is caught lying in court, perjury charges can also be filed against the accuser.
It is perfectly normal to be angry and upset at a former spouse or partner when the relationship breaks down. What is not normal is to make false claims of criminal activity to get revenge. A false allegation of domestic violence can damage the reputation of the person accused. It can lead to a criminal conviction that can cause the accused to lose their job and spend time in jail.
A person caught making a false claim of domestic violence can end up in jail, have their reputation ruined, and cause them to be fired from their place of employment. If you are going to claim you are the victim of a false accusation of domestic violence, you need to gather evidence to support your claim carefully. Contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. The longer you wait, the more damage that can happen to your case. Save all text messages, records of phone calls, and emails you may have that can prove you are being framed for a crime.