What to Do if You Are Accused of Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is a serious accusation and can include assault, stalking, battery, and even harassment that has been perpetrated by someone against a family member or household member – not necessarily husband and wife, which most people think of when they hear the term domestic violence. Florida has statutes that define domestic violence and even outline specific punishments for those convicted of these heinous offenses. If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence, it is important that you hire an attorney to represent your case.
Defenses to Domestic Violence Accusations
If you are charged with domestic violence, you will need a criminal defense attorney to establish a strategy that accomplishes one of two things:
- Your attorney may attempt to show that the prosecution has not and cannot prove their case – meaning they cannot convince a judge or jury beyond reasonable doubt that you are guilty.
- Your attorney may offer a defense that absolves you of your actions.
Many domestic violence cases turn into he-said-she-said situations, meaning it could be your word against that of an alleged victim – and you may have difficulty proving your innocence when someone blatantly accuses you of harming them. That being said, just because someone accuses you of domestic violence does not mean you will automatically be convicted. The prosecution still must establish a case strong enough to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty.
Tactics Used in a Defense Strategy
Your defense strategy will depend on the circumstances of your particular case. Some things your defense attorney may consider include:
- If the victim was even under the protected status class of individuals for domestic violence. For example, a coworker who you have no relationship with, who lives in another residence, cannot accuse you of domestic violence.
- Did the alleged assault, stalking, or harassment actually occur? Your attorney may be able to prove that the victim fabricated his or her story via physical evidence.
- Was it actually you that committed the crime? Sometimes, you may be falsely accused for the actions of another person. Your attorney can work to prove that, while the victim was assaulted, you were not the actual assailant.
- The violence was due to self-defense. There are instances where someone can be accused of domestic violence, but their actions were done in self-defense, because the real instigator of the crime was the victim. For example, an ex-girlfriend attacks you with a knife and attempts to harm you. You defend yourself by hitting and disarming her. When first responders arrive, she tells them that you attacked her – without mentioning she attacked you first with a knife. In this instance, your attorney would then show evidence that she was the aggressor, and you were acting in self-defense.
Speak with an Attorney
If you have been arrested or you are being questioned for domestic violence, it is important that you speak with an attorney. Domestic violence charges carry harsh penalties; therefore, you need an attorney by your side to protect your rights. Speak with an attorney today at The Armstrong Law Group, P.A. by calling 904-356-8618 or by filling out an online contact form.