Domestic violence is a serious issue for many California families. As a result, any allegations of domestic abuse and/or domestic violence are taken very seriously by police and prosecutors. The consequences of domestic violence allegations can be devastating.
Unfortunately, this can be true even if the accusations against you are false. Domestic violence is not only punishable by law, but is often accompanied by a harsh social stigma. If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence in Los Angeles, it is important to know how you can protect yourself from the consequences.
Defining Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is defined in California law to mean abusive conduct directed at a person with whom you share an intimate relationship. These often include spouses, children, parents, grandparents, significant others, domestic partners, and even roommates. Abuse is broadly defined to include a variety of different behaviors, including:
- Physical abuse
- Psychological and emotional abuse
- Making threats
- Disturbing the peace, and
- Destroying physical property.
Even the attempt to engage in any of these abusive behaviors can be classified as domestic violence in Los Angeles.
Evidence in Domestic Violence Cases
Domestic violence cases often lack a significant amount of physical evidence. Some cases may even rely almost entirely on the testimony of the alleged victim and abuser. When cases lack physical evidence, it can be difficult to determine whether allegations are false. The result will often boil down to how believable each party’s story is. Since we often want to believe and protect victims from perceived harm, it can be easy to believe a victim when they are lying. It will be important to know how to help yourself if you find yourself in this situation.
How to Protect Yourself From False Domestic Violence Accusations
The decisions you make after you’re falsely accused of domestic violence will affect your future. Keep these suggestions in mind to minimize the consequences of those false accusations.
1. Keep Your Distance
Don’t try to contact your accuser or confront them about the false allegations. If you’re accused of domestic violence your behavior will be closely scrutinized by investigators. If you act out in anger or attempt to contact your accuser, it may simply support the false narrative they’ve created.
2. Have Witnesses Present
If you must speak with your accuser make sure that you always have a reliable witness present. This third party can help to neutralize a tense situation and prevent your accuser from fabricating more lies. The witness can even offer testimony to rebut any claims of abuse that the accuser may present.
3. Stay Away from Social Media
The things you say, publish, and do on social media can be used as evidence in a legal proceeding. While you may want to strike out in anger or get revenge on social media, it is important to be aware that your actions can have negative consequences in your legal dispute. Try to take the high road and remain silent about your accuser and the allegations against you. Resolving the matter with the assistance of an attorney will help to preserve your reputation and limit the legal consequences of the allegations.
4. Gather Evidence
Gather any evidence you can that helps to disprove the false allegations. Search through emails, text messages, and voicemails for proof that your accuser had a motive to lie. Speak with friends and family who can support your defense. Write down anything that you can think of that will help to prove that you are innocent.
5. Contact an Experienced Attorney
Allegations of domestic violence can have serious legal consequences. In California, acts of domestic violence are punishable by law. If you are convicted, you could face 1-4 years in jail or prison, depending on the seriousness of the allegations against you. This will also cause you to bear the weight of a criminal record, which will make it extremely difficult to live a normal life. Hiring an attorney who understands how to defend against false domestic violence allegations can help you to avoid these (and other) consequences.
Get Help Today
Have you been falsely accused of domestic violence in Los Angeles? These allegations can affect every aspect of your life and even land you behind bars. Contact the Rodriguez Law Group for help protecting your future from the devastating consequences of a criminal conviction for domestic violence.
Our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys know that your future is in jeopardy when you’re falsely accused of a crime. We will thoroughly investigate your alleged crime, gather evidence to support the fact that you are not guilty, and fight to protect your legal rights. Call today to schedule a free consultation and learn more.