Law enforcement and our criminal justice system have completely changed the way they handle matters of domestic violence. Where at one time law enforcement officers would respond to a domestic disturbance call and simply tell the parties to stop, today law enforcement officers nearly always make an arrest. Because of these new procedures, some individuals are arrested as the result of false accusations when they are in fact innocent.
Law enforcement officers who respond to the scene of domestic violence often don’t witness any domestic violence or direct acts for which they can make an arrest. They must put the events of what happened together as best as they can using evidence and statements provided by the parties involved and any witnesses who may be present. When they make an arrest on what can be vague and initial assessments, accused individuals have every right to challenge the case against them and the government’s version of the facts. Effectively challenging a domestic violence allegation demands the attention of experienced attorneys.
At Boswell & Dunlap LLP, our Polk County criminal defense lawyers have extensive experience protecting the rights of clients charged with all types of crimes, including clients charged with domestic violence based on false accusations. We know that even mere allegations have the potential to tarnish one’s reputation, which is why we work diligently to investigate the matter and clearly present an effective defense.
If you have been wrongly accused of domestic violence, here are a few things to remember:
- Your rights – It is critical to understand your rights following an arrest. This includes your right to remain silent and not speak with law enforcement about the case, as it can potentially lead to incriminating statements, or statements that are misinterpreted as incriminating. You also have the right to challenge the government’s case against you, and the right to have legal representation on your side when doing so. Exercising your rights is critical to your case.
- Understand the charges – Domestic violence charges are serious crimes that pose serious penalties, including fines, court ordered classes, and terms of imprisonment. Know what’s at stake in your case, and understand that while you have the opportunity to disprove allegations made against you, you need to do so clearly and convincingly in accordance to the laws inherent to your charge. The government’s case must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, which provides the opportunity to show that allegations are unfounded or that there is doubt to whether they truly occurred.
- Know the terms involved – Following a domestic violence arrest, a restraining order may be issued. It is important to know the terms of this order and to comply with them, as violating an order can greatly complicate your case and lead to more consequences. This may include no contact orders with alleged victims, and not being allowed near their place of residence.
- Call a lawyer – One of the most important things you can do following a domestic violence accusation is to bring your case to the attention of a seasoned legal professional as soon as possible. Swift action can help our attorneys at Boswell & Dunlap LLP immediately begin protecting your rights and help you take the right steps moving forward. It also provides the time needed to build a solid defense strategy.
Don’t delay in calling our firm following an arrest for domestic violence. Trust in decades of combined legal experience and attorneys who are dedicated to protecting your rights, reputation, and future. Contact us today to get started with a free and confidential consultation and to learn how Boswell & Dunlap LLP can help.