Domestic violence refers to acts of physical, emotional or psychological abuse toward someone residing in the same household. Being charged with domestic violence can have serious legal, personal and social consequences.
It is vital to know the steps to take when facing such charges.
Stay calm and respectful
After an arrest or charge, emotions can run high. Regardless of personal feelings or beliefs about the situation, always remain calm and respectful towards law enforcement and any involved parties. Avoid escalating the situation or making incriminating statements.
Comply with any orders
Often, the court might issue protective or restraining orders after a domestic violence charge. Understanding and complying with any conditions set out in these orders is essential. Violating such orders can lead to additional legal complications.
Keeping a record of events, conversations and other pertinent information can be helpful as the case progresses. This includes the details of the incident, interactions with the accuser after the event and any potential evidence that can shed light on the situation.
Seek counseling or therapy
Engaging in therapy or counseling can demonstrate a commitment to addressing the root causes of the behavior. Programs designed for anger management or domestic violence can provide valuable insights.
Avoid contact with the accuser
While emotions might compel individuals to reach out, avoiding contact with the accuser is usually advisable. This prevents potential altercations or misunderstandings that can further complicate matters.
Research and understand rights
One should be aware of every individual’s rights when charged with a crime. This includes the right to remain silent and be innocent until proven guilty. Familiarize yourself with local laws and regulations concerning domestic violence charges.
Gather character references
Character references from friends, coworkers and community members can play a significant role in the case. These can provide a perspective on the individual’s character outside the specific incident.
With over 10 million domestic violence cases a year, domestic violence cases are not uncommon. However, facing a domestic violence charge can be a daunting experience. Remember always to prioritize safety, understanding and responsibility throughout the process.