A domestic violence conviction can result in severe criminal penalties. It can also cause significant problems in your personal and professional life. The best way to fight domestic violence allegations is to hire an experienced San Diego domestic violence lawyer.
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How Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Help You With Domestic Violence Charges?
If you are charged with domestic violence, the first thing you should do is exercise your right to remain silent. You cannot talk your way out of allegations of domestic violence. You need an experienced San Diego Domestic Violence Lawyer to help you develop an effective defense strategy.
A criminal defense lawyer can help you with a domestic violence case by:
- Explaining your legal rights and your options for defending yourself against the allegations
- Fighting false allegations of domestic abuse
- Gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses that could help in your defense
- Exposing factual inconsistencies in the alleged victim’s statement and testimony
- Comparing affidavits, statements, and other written evidence to identify documentary inconsistencies
- Exposing motivations the alleged victim might have for filing false domestic violence charges
- Providing you with guidance about how to avoid situations that could worsen your case
- Representing you at court hearings to advocate on your behalf
- Challenging evidence presented by the state
- Identifying evidence that questions the credibility of the alleged victim and state witnesses
- Vigorously opposing the court issuing a temporary or permanent restraining order, including emergency protective orders and criminal protective orders
- Aggressively negotiating with the prosecution for a plea bargain that is fair if going to trial is not in your best interests
Your criminal defense attorney will work to build a strong defense strategy that utilizes all possible defenses to the criminal charges. Do not attempt to contact the accuser directly. Always act through your lawyer to avoid causing any problems with your defense.
Also, you should not discuss the case with anyone other than your lawyer. It would be wise to stop using social media and avoid posting anything online without consulting your lawyer. Some defendants provide evidence the state can use against them merely by posting information online or discussing their case with family members or friends.
Potential Defenses to Domestic Violence Charges in California
Hiring a criminal defense lawyer to handle your domestic violence case means you have someone fighting for you in and out of court. Your lawyer will thoroughly investigate the charges against you and analyze the prosecution’s evidence to determine the best defense strategy for your case.
Potential defenses to domestic violence charges include:
False Allegations of Domestic Abuse
Being falsely accused of domestic violence is more common than people realize. The alleged victim might be angry with you or want to have evidence to use against you in a family court case. Unfortunately, proving that the alleged victim is lying about the domestic violence allegations can be difficult.
A criminal defense attorney might hire a private investigator to assist with the case. The goal is to uncover evidence that questions the credibility of the accuser. Witnesses can be an important element in building a defense against false allegations of abuse.
You might be able to claim self-defense if you were defending yourself, your children, a family member, or another person from harm.
For example, you pushed your spouse away because they hit your child. As a result, the spouse might sustain minor injuries and claim abuse.
However, you did not attack or intend to injure your spouse. Instead, you pushed your spouse because it was the only way to stop them from hurting your child.
Sometimes, an accuser uses an unintentional accident to claim domestic violence. Therefore, there was a lack of intent required to commit a crime.
Unintentional injuries might result in civil cases for personal injury, but they might not meet the legal requirements for a crime. Testimony from eyewitnesses often helps prove the defense of an unintentional accident.
Your attorney may argue that you are innocent of the charges because you have an alibi for the time of the alleged criminal offense. Your attorney may uncover other evidence that supports the argument that you are innocent of the allegations against you.
Lack of Evidence
The state has the burden of proving all legal elements of a domestic violence case to obtain a conviction. The level of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt. If the state’s evidence is insufficient to support the criminal charges, an attorney might be able to have the charges dismissed.
What Are the Consequences of a Domestic Abuse Conviction in California?
The consequences of domestic violence are criminal penalties, including jail time and fines.
A judge may order:
- A temporary or permanent restraining order
- Payments to a battered women’s shelter
- Participation in a counseling program
- Imposition of a protective order
In addition to the criminal penalties, a domestic violence conviction can tremendously impact other areas of your life.
Collateral consequences could include:
- Damage to your professional reputation
- Embarrassment and harm to your personal reputation
- Problems with other family members
- Issues regarding your Visa status and other immigration problems
- Possible issues in family court regarding child custody and visitation
- Loss of your right to own or possess a firearm
- Problems locating suitable housing
- Difficulty finding a job due to your criminal record
Many domestic violence crimes are wobblers. A wobbler is a criminal offense that can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony.
Never assume that a domestic violence allegation is a “minor” problem. The prosecutor could charge you with a felony offense. Therefore, you should contact a defense lawyer if you have any reason to believe you could be facing charges.
Schedule a Free Consultation With a San Diego Criminal Defense Lawyer If You’re Accused of Domestic Violence
A domestic violence defense attorney will help you fight domestic violence allegations to protect your reputation, criminal record, and freedom. Schedule a free case evaluation with an experienced attorney at Blair Defense Criminal Lawyers to discuss the accusations against you, call us at (619) 357-4977.