Whether the allegations are entirely untrue or not, it’s a scary situation to find yourself charged with domestic violence. One moment where everything suddenly spiraled out of control can have an immediate effect on your life – and the potential to affect your entire future.
Most people in your situation have a lot of questions. Here are three that come up a lot:
1. Can the alleged victim simply drop the charges?
The alleged victims in a domestic violence case do not have the power to “drop the charges” against you. In fact, they are not even responsible for the charges against you in the first place. It’s the prosecutor, acting on behalf of the state, who makes that decision. They can even force the victim to testify against their wishes.
2. Will the case be dropped if the alleged victim recants?
That’s incredibly unlikely. Domestic violence victims sometimes change their stories simply because they feel guilty that a partner could lose their job or go to jail over the situation, especially if they share children. Sometimes, they even change their stories because they’ve been intimidated or threatened by an abuser or an abuser’s friends and family.
3. Is it okay to talk to the alleged victim if they reach out?
If you’ve been placed under a family violence protective order and told that you must not have any contact with your alleged victim, there’s no leniency. Even if the alleged victim tries to contact you first, responding to their communications can cause you to be arrested all over again and face additional charges. You could also be convicted of violating the protective order even if your initial charges are eventually dropped or you’re acquitted.
When you’re scared and looking for some kind of answer or hope for a positive resolution to your domestic violence case, legal guidance is wise. Many domestic violence claims can be resolved without going to trial.