A domestic assault charge is a very serious legal situation to find yourself in. Regardless of the circumstances that lead to the charge, consulting with a criminal defense lawyer should always be your first move. Their advise can be invaluable as you navigate the legal system. The following are two things you need to be aware of if you find yourself charged with domestic assault.
#1: Do not try to contact your accuser
Often, the accuser or victim in your case is a romantic partner or other family member. It can be tempting to try and contact them to work things out, outside of the legal system. This is a bad idea for many reasons. First and foremost, a restraining or no-contact order is usually placed by the judge in any case of possible domestic violence. Attempting contact puts you in violation of this order, which can result in jail time, increased sentencing, and fines. Furthermore, trying to work out your difficulties outside of court can lead to further violence and charges. All contact with the accuser should only take place through your lawyers or through a court-approved mediation or counseling specialist.
Indirect contact can also put you in violation of your restraining order. Plus, any record of contact can be used against you in court. This means that you shouldn't try to pass messages to the accuser through friends or family. Also, avoid electronic contact, whether it is through private email or via a social media site. Further, do not post about the accuser or anyone else pertaining to the case, or the case in general, on any online websites or forums. Things said online can be construed as harassment and used against you in court.
#2: Seek counseling
It's a common misconception that seeking counseling for domestic violence is the same as an admission of guilt. This simply isn't the case. Being accused of a crime can be deeply traumatic on a psychological level. Working with a domestic violence counselor not only helps you work through this trauma, it can also provide you with deeper understanding of the behaviors that lead you to the point of having criminal charges brought against you. Many judges and juries also look favorably upon those that are seeking counseling and trying to improve themselves, as long as the effort is sincere. In the event you are found guilty, previous counseling can sometimes result in a reduced sentence or count toward time served.
Working with your lawyer is a must. Contact law offices like Nelson Fromer & Crocco Law Offices to learn more.