Domestic violence cases are some of the most common criminal charges brought in Utah County. Below we offer three tips for dealing with domestic violence charges
Respect the Pretrial Protective Order
After an individual is arrested for domestic violence he will be released from jail with a pretrial protective order; or, if the defendant does not bail out from jail he will see a judge to determine the bail amount and whether the pretrial protective order should be entered.
At the initial court appearance, the court will likely issue a pretrial protective order which prohibits the defendant from having any contact with the alleged victim in the case if the alleged victim shows up and argues for the order. The victim is given an opportunity to attend and argue in favor of or against the pretrial protective order. It has been our experience that in most cases the alleged victim does not even show up for the initial appearance and so the judge dismisses the pretrial protective order or does not enter one. It has also been our experience, however, that if the alleged victim attends and wants the order, the judge will issue it.
Make sure you comply 100% with the pretrial protective order because if you don’t, violating the order is a criminal charge in and of itself.
Consider Your Spouse’s Frame of Mind
If you are married, your spouse may be able to help your case if he or she does not wish to testify against you. In the majority of cases we’ve seen we most alleged victims are repentant of having called the police because domestic violence did not actually occur or because it was not serious enough to call the police. In those types of cases your spouse should get her own attorney to let the prosecutor know he or she will be exercising the spousal privilege and will not testify.
In cases where the victim spouse is out for blood, it makes sense to simply steer clear and not attempt to reconcile and to simply defend yourself against the claims.
Most importantly, get an attorney. Without appropriate legal representation there is a good chance your case could become dire. Call us anytime at 801.800.8246 for a free consultation with one of our Provo Criminal Defense Lawyers.