False Allegations from Alleged Victims in Domestic Violence Cases

Ohio domestic violence attorney Brian Joslyn explains how alleged victims can make false statements to police and then try to fix the situation after charges have been filed.  If you’ve been arrested for a domestic violence offense in Ohio, call Joslyn Law Firm at (614) 444-1900 today for a consultation to discuss your case.

When domestic violence cases come to our firm, they come from people from all walks of life. Whether it’s a married couple, whether they’re partners, sometimes they’re just roommates, boyfriends, girlfriends. The key is that they’re household members and that they live with each other. And sometimes they involve kids, too. And when they do involve kids, they come with additional charges, one of which is child endangerment. But, when the police are called out to these scenes, in these scenarios, you know, it’s by statutes, that they are to separate the witnesses and determine a primary aggressor. And oftentimes, when the police arrive at these scenes, I mean, the emotions are extremely high, a lot of times there’s alcohol at play. And there’s external factors that cause sometimes alleged victims to make statements that aren’t entirely true. After someone’s arrested, and they wake up the next day, there’s buyer’s remorse for what has happened. And the alleged victims then start to try to fix the situation, and it’s not uncommon for them to first call the police, call the prosecutor’s office and say “this was a mistake, I didn’t want this to happen, this can’t be, you know, he or she provides a great household for us. And unfortunately, their cries for help and their cries to help fix the situation are not gonna fix the situation, and that’s where getting an attorney involved can help significantly. Alleged victims have a voice, whether their accusations are true or not, and they’re entitled under Marcy’s law to have someone represent their interest. And sometimes we’re representing alleged victims who want the case to go away. Sometimes we’re the ones contacting the prosecutors and saying “we represent the alleged victim and we are telling you that what was said at the time that this happened is not true and that the person that you are currently charging is wrongfully charged.” and we go through a process of trying to explain this. But unfortunately, for most prosecutor’s offices, it’s really a one-way street. Once that accusation is made, there’s no turning back. There’s gonna follow through with what that initial statement is and they’re going to do, what they think is in the alleged victim’s best interest, and what’s in everybody’s best interest, regardless of what we think. But that doesn’t mean they’re gonna get what they want, and that’s where the fight starts. And in court, ultimately, prosecutor’s offices face the difficulty of alleged victims not being cooperative, or if they are being cooperative, it’s to tell them “I’m not gonna help you get this conviction, because it’s wrong and what I said is wrong”. Now the other hard part in many of these cases is, when an alleged victim makes a statement and it’s a false accusation, it’s really hard to go back in there and say, you know, “I lied to the police about this”. And it can be hard to untangle that. And with the aid of good attorneys on both sides, both for a victim advocate attorney role, and the defense attorney’s role/ sometimes we’re working hand and hand with each other to unravel a false accusation, and convince a prosecutor that this case should be dropped. Unfortunately, too few are dropped from conversation, and more are dropped due to failure to prosecute due to lack of evidence.

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