Domestic assault is a serious crime that cannot be ignored or treated lightly. However, not every person accused of this horrific act is genuinely guilty of the accusations against them. Sometimes, disgruntled or ill-intentioned people will weaponize the legal system by leveling false domestic violence accusations against an ex-partner or former spouse in an attempt to get revenge or gain leverage in a custody or divorce proceeding.
If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic. Here’s what to do to ensure that you beat these unfair charges and that justice wins the day.
1. Stop all communication with the accuser
If you’ve received news that you’re being charged with domestic violence, your first impulse might be to contact the person and demand to know why they’ve made these allegations against you. However, this is absolutely the worst thing to do in the wake of such charges. Your accuser could use this communication later on at trial to paint you as someone hysterical or prone to outbursts.
When you’ve been accused of domestic violence, go as radio silent as possible. Don’t post about it on social media, don’t talk about it with your friends and, above all else, refuse any and all contact with your accuser.
2. Hire a defense attorney
These are not the types of charges that one can fight on their own. These allegations are serious and the lack of an attorney could lead to you facing serious consequences for bogus charges. It’s essential that you book a consultation with an attorney who specializes in domestic violence defense as soon as possible.
3. Be honest with your lawyer
While you should be silent with everyone else, it’s important that you’re as candid as possible with your lawyer. When it comes to false domestic violence charges, they usually fall into 1 of these 2 categories:
- The plaintiff is completely lying
- The defendant did get physical with the plaintiff, but it was self-defense
Depending on your account of the alleged incident, your attorney will form a strategy to ensure that the truth comes to light. In cases where the charges are based on complete lies, a lack of medical records or witness testimony can often be useful in demonstrating that the supposed events never took place.
In situations where the defendant was acting in self-defense, your own medical records and personal documents (for example, a text message you sent the night of the alleged events telling a friend you were scared for your safety) can often prove very useful at trial in demonstrating that you were not the instigator.
Being on the receiving end of false charges can feel like the end of the world. However, the right legal team can not only help to assuage your fears, but help ensure that the truth is brought to light and that justice prevails.