A domestic dispute can quickly turn heated. And when it does, it can become physical, resulting in someone getting hurt. When that happens, you might find yourself on the receiving end of criminal allegations, which, if improperly handled, could have tremendous negative consequences on your life. If you’re convicted of a domestic violence offense, then you could face jail or prison time, and your ability to spend time with your kids can be significantly curtailed.
If you’re worried about the potential outcome of your domestic violence case, then you should use your anxiety as a motivating factor to build an aggressive criminal defense. But how do you go about defending against allegations of domestic violence? Let’s take a closer look.
Strategies for defending against domestic violence allegations
The specific approach you take to your domestic violence case is going to depend on the facts. That said, here are some of the most common and most successful defense strategies that you should consider deploying in your case:
- Claim self-defense: You have a right to defend yourself when you believe that you’re at risk of imminent harm. Keep in mind, though, that if you want to avail yourself of this defense strategy, then you need to demonstrate that you weren’t an instigator in the event and that you only used the amount of force necessary to adequately protect yourself.
- Argue that the event didn’t occur as presented: A lot of domestic violence cases are he-said, she-said situations. Therefore, you need the court to buy into your take on the events that occurred. One way to do this is to attack the victim’s credibility. You could do this by showing that the other party has made inconsistent statements over time or that they have a history of committing crimes that are tied to lying.
- Present evidence that someone else caused the injuries: Even though the victim is blaming you, there’s a possibility that someone else was responsible. If that’s the case, then you need to gather evidence that paints a clear and accurate picture of what actually happened.
- Argue that the prosecution has simply failed to meet its burden: Remember, the state has to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. That’s a high hurdle to clear. If the prosecution’s case is lacking in any fashion, then you might be able to argue that they’ve simply failed to present sufficient evidence to convict you.
- Claim procedural errors: For the prosecution to bring charges against you, they’re going to need evidence. That evidence will be collected by law enforcement, which then begs the question of whether they’ve gathered that evidence legally. If the police failed to read you your rights before you made incriminating statements or if they improperly used an exception to the warrant requirement before searching your car or your home, then you might be able to block evidence from being used against you.
Don’t leave your domestic violence case to chance
You don’t want to experience the negative consequences associated with a criminal conviction. To avoid that outcome, you’ll have to gather and present a compelling criminal defense. That means gathering key physical evidence, talking to witnesses, understanding the law, and finding ways to attack the reliability of the state’s case.
If you haven’t been charged with a criminal offense before, then the process can be daunting and scary. But you don’t have to face your criminal charges alone. Instead, you can find support and advocates who are willing to help you stand up and fight for a just outcome.