Domestic ViolenceWhen couples are under stress, the pressure can sometimes boil over.  Such individuals sometimes exhibit aggressive conduct toward those closest to them: their loved ones.  When the conduct escalates to assaultive behavior, the crime of domestic violence -or domestic assault- can be committed.  The Michigan legislature, recognizing the unique relationship of couples residing within the same household, has enacted legislation taking these circumstances into account.

The law provides that an individual charged with domestic assault can plead guilty to the charge with a “delayed sentence”.  If the individual successfully completes a probationary period, usually including participation and completion of an anger management or domestic assault course, then the case will be dismissed  and no conviction enters on the individual’s criminal history.

On the other hand, allegations of domestic assault are sometimes trumped-up; even fabricated.  Domestic assault charges often present a classic “he-says-she-says” scenario from an evidentiary perspective.  If the domestic couple are the only witnesses, these cases frequently go to trial.  The result usually depends on the credibility of the witnesses.

It has been our experience in such cases that usually, the accused makes a detailed statement, sometimes even a written statement, to the police.  This is never a good idea as even a well-intentioned statement will be used against its author.  Best to remain silent and request the assistance of a lawyer.

Sometimes, it is the woman who is the aggressor in a relationship.  We have seen cases where, when this happens, the woman is charged; and we have seen cases where the man contacts local police and he is the one who gets charged with assault.  It depends on the totality of the circumstances and the credibility of the domestic combatants.  Either way, a lawyer can help.

Recent technology has given rise to new forms of Digital Domestic Violence. Click the link to review a recent article we published on this evolving subject.

In cases of domestic assault, the accused often has many options.  Contact us for a free consultation before going to the police.

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