Reasons Your Domestic Violence Charges May Be Dropped
Being arrested and charged with domestic violence can be a traumatic experience. If a person is arrested and charged with domestic violence, they risk facing fines and a prison sentence. If a domestic violence charge arises from a sex offense, the accused could end up being required to register as a sex offender. Additionally, if a person is convicted, the conviction will go on their record and could affect their future in many ways, such as in the area of employment. Fortunately, if you’ve been arrested and charged with domestic violence, you have a chance to defend yourself. You Are innocent until proven guilty. A qualified domestic violence attorney can help you build a strong defense to seek the best possible outcome. If you are lucky, the prosecutor could even end up dropping the charges against you. The following are some of the reasons the prosecutor may drop your domestic violence charges:
Before you can be convicted of domestic violence, the prosecutor must prove you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Without enough evidence, the prosecutor will have a hard time proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecutor does not have sufficient evidence to establish one or more of the elements of the crime, they may decide to drop your charges.
The prosecutor will review your statements and the victim’s statements. If there are inconsistencies in the victim’s statements, the prosecutor may realize that those statements are unreliable. For example, suppose a victim made a verbal statement to the responding officer and then gave a written statement. If those two statements are inconsistent, the victim may be deemed an unreliable witness. Areas where inconsistencies may arise include;
- Time the incident happened
- The part of the body the victim says they were struck
- The relationship between the defendant and the victim
- The reason the incident happened
Lack of Visible Injuries
The prosecutor basically only needs evidence of offensive or harmful touching to prosecute you. Visible injuries are not necessarily required for you to be charged with domestic violence. However, the lack of visible injuries may make a prosecutor decide that further prosecution is unnecessary.
In determining whether further prosecution is necessary, the prosecutor will examine the circumstances surrounding the alleged incident. They will look at whether there is any corroborating evidence.
Lack of an Independent Witness
Just because no one witnessed a domestic violence act does not mean a defendant cannot be arrested, charged, and prosecuted. The case can be based on the victim’s allegations, evidence gathered from the scene or a visible injury to the victim. However, suppose the prosecutor has little evidence, the victim’s statements are conflicting, and you have no record of domestic violence. In such a case, the prosecutor may decide not to pursue prosecution without an independent witness.
Reject Request Letter
After you’ve been charged with domestic violence, your defense attorney can write a letter to the prosecutor detailing why the evidence they (the prosecutor) have against you is insufficient to prosecute you. Your attorney can write a letter informing the prosecutor that there is reasonable doubt domestic violence occurred or that you committed it.
Contact an NYC Domestic Violence Attorney
Have you been arrested and charged with domestic violence? Contact our experienced NYC domestic violence attorney, Mark I. Cohen, to get help with your case.