Many defendants, especially in domestic violence cases, incorrectly believe that the alleged victim can simply “drop the charges.” Victims of domestic violence do have rights and can “request” that charges in a criminal case be dropped, but they can’t drop the case. The fact that the alleged victim is making the request that the domestic violence-related charges be dropped may be a factor in any subsequent prosecution….usually to the benefit of the defendant.
Each prosecuting agency, whether it be the City Attorney or the District Attorney, have different policies regarding domestic violence cases. A misdemeanor in some cities or counties may be a felony charge in other cities and counties. Contacting a lawyer prior to police contact is critical to a just and fair resolution to any domestic violence case.
Errol Cook, Esq.