How can an assault charge be dropped? 24 Answers as of June 13, 2013

Son & girl friend got into argument. He slapped the phone out of her hand, and in the heat of the moment girl friend called the cop after son left and came home. She took out warrant on son. They charged him with assault on female. They were upset for a few days and now are back together. They went to court and asked for a continuance. Son was told he needs to get lawyer or he would have to plead guilty and could possibly get a year probation. Girl Friend asked to drop charges but was told that it was too late.

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Lapin Law Offices
Lapin Law Offices | Jeffrey Lapin
Although your Question may involve an "injury," which is not clear from the information you provide, what you are really asking is whether, and if they can, how, criminal charges can be dropped. Questions involving criminal law are outside of the scope of the "Injury" Category/ Law Area and the areas of law in which I practice. As such, I cannot provide an answer to your question. I would suggest re-asking your question and list "Criminal" or "Criminal Defense" as the Category.
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 8/29/2012
Law Office of Melvin Franke | Melvin Franke
Hire an experienced attorney.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 8/27/2012
David F. Stoddard
David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
Only the state can drop the charges. She is the victim, and she is entitled to have her wishes taken into consideration, but it is still up to the state. He should get an attorney.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 8/26/2012
Law Offices of Mark L. Smith
Law Offices of Mark L. Smith | Mark L. Smith
Son has to hire a lawyer.
Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
Replied: 6/13/2013
Conway Law Pllc.
Conway Law Pllc. | B. L. Conway
Well it is the States Case Now. Be very careful here. BE VERY VERY QUIET: Don't give a statement to anybody !!!!!!!!!!!!!
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 8/26/2012
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C. | Robert Kelly
    When somebody commits and crime and somebody else calls the police, it becomes a matter for the government to prosecute. Witnesses changing their minds may not make much difference.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    James M. Osak, P.C.
    James M. Osak, P.C. | James M. Osak
    YOU CANNOT DROP THE CHARGES. The state is the witness against son. They will NOT drop the charges. Have son hire an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
    Unfortunately, once the police are called and charges are brought, it is out of the victim's control as to whether or not the charges are dropped. It is not Victim v. Defendant, it is Commonwealth v. Defendant. Certainly there are things that a defense attorney can do to protect the Constitutional rights of the defendant and most likely get the charges dismissed. Unfortunately, without this legal protection, your son could end up with a conviction. I have handled hundreds of these cases and have gotten the charges dropped. Speak with a good Criminal Defense lawyer that practices in the are where your son is charged. He/she should be able to get the right disposition for your son.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Mosley, Engelman & Jones, LLP
    Mosley, Engelman & Jones, LLP | Britany M. Engelman
    Once the city/state decides to prosecute it is out of an individual's hands whether to drop it or not. She can refuse to testify against the defendant, this would hinder the DA's case and he/she may decide to drop it.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Cale Plamann | Cale Plamann
    Domestic violence charges are usually not dropped after they are filed (there were too many cases of wifebeaters coercing their spouses into dropping charges). Your son should get a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Law Office of William L Spern | William Spern
    A prosecutor can bring charges based on what evidence and statement were made. The girl friend will be subpoenaed to testify of what occurred. Unless the girl friend fails to appear, sounds like they have a good case of domestic violence. Get an attorney and try to get a plea to a an attempted or a lesser charge.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    What kind of man slaps a woman? He should plead guilty and watch himself. Next time is jail time.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 8/24/2012
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A.
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A. | Christopher J. Roberts
    This is a very common situation, and the outcome varies a lot with who is prosecuting. As a general rule, it doesn?t matter if the person who made the complaint later changes her (or his) mind and drops the charges. Once things are set in motion, it is difficult to stop. The best thing for your son to do would be to hire a lawyer who does criminal defense. A lawyer could probably help get your son into what is known as the ?diversion? program, which basically required him to take anger management or similar classes, after which the charges are dropped. In some cases, the lawyer may even convince the prosecutor to drop charges. The other option is go to trial and defend the charges, but the problem there is that ?assault? is extremely broad. You can be convicted for basically any touching at all (pushing, poking, slapping, etc). Slapping a phone out of her hand may be enough under the law.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    Telling your son he should obtain a lawyer is sound advise. He can represent himself but is at a great disadvantage. He does not have to plead guilty if he does not have a lawyer. Criminal charges are not brought by a private citizen. They are brought in the name of the People of the State of Michigan by the prosecuting attorney. Only the prosecuting attorney can decide to dismiss charges once he has authorized them. In a domestic violence situation the prosecutor is often reluctant to dismiss the charges even if the victim does not want to follow through. Your son will probably have to take the matter to trial if he hopes for an acquittal.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Law Office of Gregory Crain | Gregory Crain
    She should insist the prosecutor drop the charges.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    This is not unusual. Your son needs an attorney now. He is about to potentially get a record which will follow him for the rest of his life.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Ezim Law Firm | Dean Esposito
    She can execute an affidavit that she requests the charges be dropped and will not testify at a trial of the matter.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    Historically, victims of domestic violence have been intimidated into withdrawing charges, so a District Attorney's office can continue to press a case even without the victim's consent. Yes, of course the son was told he needs a lawyer. He does. It's like telling a football player he needs a helmet, it's that obvious. Your son is being charged with a crime, this is nothing to take lightly. The girlfriend can offer to come in to the laywer's office and sign an affidavit expressing regret and requesting withdrawal of charges. Unless he has a record of violent offenses, they they may reduce the charges and issue an Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal, which will make the whole thing go away.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Jules D'Alessandro | Jules D'Alessandro
    The court and prosecutor are worried that perhaps your son is influencing or possibly threatening his girlfriend to drop the charges. They want a lawyer present to make sure this is not in fact happening. Your son needs to get a lawyer. In addition a no contact order was issued against your son. If the court or the police find out they are "together" your son will be charged with the additional crime of violating a no contact order.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Abom & Kutulakis, L.L.P,.
    Abom & Kutulakis, L.L.P,. | Jason P. Kutulakis
    In domestic violence cases, it is common for the victim to later ask that charges be dismissed. Prosecutors are always reluctant to do so. You should retain counsel for your son.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Miller & Harrison, LLC
    Miller & Harrison, LLC | David Harrison
    Only the prosecutor can drop the charges, but girlfriend can let prosecutor know her wishes. However, it is not likely to be dropped. Hire your son a lawyer familiar with domestic violence cases.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
    Absolutely correct. The prosecutor presses the charges regardless of the victims wishes. Get a lawyer now.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/26/2012
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    Usually the DA will drop charges if witnesses ask but that is the DA call. Get a lawyer and let him try to persuade the DA.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 8/26/2012
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