When most people think of domestic abuse, they picture a husband physically abusing his wife. While physical abuse is a form of domestic abuse, it can also include sexual or mental abuse. Not all cases involve a husband abusing a wife either. These cases may involve a wife hitting her husband, abuse between same sex partners or even a type of abuse against a child. If you find yourself facing charges of domestic abuse, you should learn what the future holds for you and what comes next.
Bringing a Charge
Before the district attorney will file charges against you, he or she must ensure that there is significant proof that shows you were an abuser. This may include witness statements from neighbors or police officers who responded to a call at your home. If the DA determines that there is just cause, the case will go forward. You may find yourself spending a night or more in jail until you go through a bail hearing and get released. Your partner may seek a restraining order to keep you away from the home as well.
Going to Trial
Many people assume that all domestic violence cases immediately go to trial, but many cases never reach the courtroom. Your attorney can work with you and the DA to work out a plea agreement. This lets you plead guilty to the crime or a lesser charge. For example, instead of pleading guilty to a domestic violence charge that carries years in jail, you may plead to a lesser charge and go through a therapy program instead. You also have the legal right to request a formal hearing or trial that takes place in the courtroom and in front of a jury of your peers.
Speaking with an Attorney
Domestic violence charges are among the more common charges filed in California every day. When your partner claims that you are an abuser, you may feel confused about what to do next and even terrified about what others will think of you. That is why you should contact an Alameda County domestic violence attorney right away. A good attorney can help you decide whether you plead to a lesser charge or go forward with a court trial. You’ll also get help gathering evidence that proves you did not abuse your partner. Schedule a free consultation with an attorney in your area as soon as possible.