Falsely Accused of Domestic Violence
June 15, 2022
More than one in three women and one in four men experience some form of domestic violence in the United States, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline. While there is no doubt that family violence and domestic abuse affect millions of people in the U.S., many people find themselves faced with false accusations of domestic violence.
When domestic violence charges are not based on fact, the defendant needs to understand the options for defending themselves. Often, defendants falsely accused of domestic violence choose to wait, hoping that the charges will go away on their own. However, waiting and doing nothing is not the best strategy.
Instead, it is vital to speak with an experienced attorney to guide you through this difficult time. At RSL Law, the criminal defense attorneys are dedicated to advocating for the rights of people facing false accusations of domestic violence. With offices in Sarasota, Port Charlotte, and Fort Myers, RSL Law can review the facts of your case and help you understand how you can prove your innocence.
Consequences of a Domestic Violence Charge
A domestic violence conviction can lead to serious criminal penalties, including probation, hefty fines, and time behind bars. However, jail time and other criminal penalties are not the only consequences of a domestic violence charge. Other consequences of a domestic violence charge in Florida include:
Possible loss of a job and or professional licenses
Revocation of a concealed weapons permit
Damaged personal reputation
Estrangement from children and other family members
Ineligibility to have your criminal record expunged or sealed
Forfeited right to own a gun while on probation
Law enforcement and courts in Florida take allegations of domestic violence very seriously. That is why it is not uncommon for police officers to believe the alleged victim of domestic violence, even when the accusations are exaggerated or completely false.
Reasons for False Accusation
Reasons people make false accusations of domestic violence vary from one case to another. However, some of the most common reasons people are accused of a crime they did not commit include:
Spouses or family members had an altercation, but things never actually got physical. The alleged victim is exaggerating their claims to make the accused feel guilty.
The accuser was actually the one who used physical force against the accused and made false accusations to avoid charges against themselves.
The accuser is trying to win custody in legal proceedings and or get an upper hand in a divorce case.
False accusations of domestic violence are made to force the accused out of the home.
The alleged victim is trying to get revenge for the accused’s divorce filing, extramarital affair, or other things that have deeply hurt the accuser.
The accuser is mentally unstable. Often, false accusations of domestic violence are made by partners who suffer from mental health issues.
Regardless of the reasons you were falsely accused of domestic violence, it is vital to act immediately. The accused should take action as soon as possible to prevent the false accusations from ruining their reputation and career, not to mention the criminal penalties.
Steps to Take if You Were Falsely Accused of Domestic Violence
There are specific steps to take when being falsely accused of domestic violence. Taking action as soon as possible is important to secure the most positive outcome possible and avoid criminal charges for something you did not do. Things to do when facing false accusations of domestic violence include:
Hire a criminal defense attorney to help you with your case and assist you with preparing a strong defense strategy.
Gather evidence and witness statements to prove your innocence.
Do not provide any statements to anyone until you speak with your attorney.
Avoid contact with the accuser.
Do not post anything on social media, especially if your posts or comments are related to the accused or the allegations against you.
A skilled criminal defense attorney can help you understand the best course of action to help you fight the false domestic violence charges against you.
If the accusations against you are false, you may have a valid defense to reduce or avoid the charges. Some of the possible defenses available to defendants falsely accused of domestic violence include:
Lack of intent. Depending on the facts of your case, it may be appropriate to defend yourself against false accusations by claiming that there was no intent to commit the crime.
False allegations. Often, the most effective defense strategy is to prove that the allegations against you are false. However, the defendant has the burden to prove that the alleged crime never occurred.
The defense strategy you can use to fight the charges will depend on the circumstances and facts of your case. That is why a consultation with a knowledgeable attorney is advisable to understand your defense options.
Skilled Legal Representation
Being falsely accused of domestic violence can be a frightening experience. The criminal defense attorneys at RSL Law understand the potential impacts of the charges and are dedicated to helping clients seek the justice they deserve. The law firm represents people facing domestic violence charges in Port Charlotte, Florida, and surrounding areas. Get a case evaluation to discuss possible defense options in your specific situation.