How can I get the domestic charges dropped? 11 Answers as of July 20, 2012

I was arrested for domestic violence, but i was acting in self defense when my girlfriend was hitting me and gave me a bloody nose. she called the police because she was scared but dropped all charges and we have been fine ever since. even though she dropped charges, the state of michigan (as i was told) still has to press charges against me. my girlfriend doesn't want them to press charges, how can we get the charges dropped completely?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
James M. Osak, P.C.
James M. Osak, P.C. | James M. Osak
It's NOT up to you now! Once you got the cops involved THEY will now decide whether to press charges or not. Girlfriend can call/write them but she could get charged with filing a "false report." If you go to trial girlfriend can "disappear" and not show up to testify but the cop who showed up will be the witness against you! That's what happens when you involve third-parties (cops) in your domestic affairs.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/20/2012
Law Offices of Ward F. McDonough, Jr. | Ward F. McDonough, Jr.
Your girl friend should go to the Prosecutor's Office and she will likely see a Victim Advocate. She should advise her of the situation and explain that she does not want to continue the prosecution. They will probably think that you have "put her up to this". She will have to be persistent and convincing and advise them of exactly what happened and/or more importantly what did not happen. The Prosecutor's do not like to have people make untrue complaints which costs them time and money. A person making a false allegation which results in the filing of a Felony complaint is itself a crime. The Truth will set you free.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/20/2012
Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC
Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC | Jacob Peter Sartz IV
I'd recommend you retain a lawyer to assist you with this matter. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court may appoint you one at the public's expense. You have a right to counsel. Whether the case proceeds based on what you described is up to the prosecutor unless you and/or your attorney can win a motion to dismiss before a judge or if the prosecutor fails to meet their burden of proof at a judge or jury trial. Your girlfriend should talk to the prosecutor if she has any concerns with the pending matter; however, you should make sure that you do not violate any no-contact orders or prohibitions against contact with her. She is an adverse witness in a pending criminal charge and should be treated as such, even though you have a relationship with her. If the prosecutor believes you are attempting to influence her or tamper with her potential testimony, you could face additional charges. Further, if the prosecutor believes that she lied to the police, she could be facing charges. The case will probably proceed because this is a routine situation with these types of charges and they'll probably ask for a warrant if she doesn't show up for an important trial date. Further, what she said in the police report may already be admissible under changes in the rules of evidence. I'd recommend you retain a lawyer to assist you with this matter. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court may appoint you one at the public's expense. You are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt and have a right to counsel.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/19/2012
Toivonen Law Office | John Toivonen
The best and most efficient way to get any assault or domestic violence charge dropped is to demand a preliminary examination. If the victim does not testify in this hearing generally the charges are dropped. If the victim does appear and testify you want a criminal defense attorney who will ask the right questions to expose the inconsistencies and contradictions in the victim's narrative. You need to gather evidence especially any medical reports that indicate that you were assaulted. I am not entirely clear on what is happening in your case. If she does not want to testify against you the state does not have a case. It is common for victims to change their minds on charges of domestic violence. You need to speak with an attorney to get some clarifiaction on these issues.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/19/2012
Kevin Bessant
Kevin Bessant | Kevin Bessant
The State of Michigan has the prosecutorial power to determine whether or not to bring forth criminal charges in a criminal matter, not necessarily the victim in a case. Even if the prosecution plans to move forward with the charges, they must still have enough evidence to go forward, such as witness testimony and the testimony of your girlfriend. If your girlfriend refuses to testify, this could have the ability to hamper their case, but not entirely. I would advise you to be proactive a consult a criminal defense attorney to help prepare in the case criminal charges are filed instead of worrying about having the case dropped, something you have no control over.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/19/2012
    Douglas M. Philpott, P.C. | Peter J. Philpott
    She needs to be interviewed by the prosecutor at your next court date. They are unlikely to proceed without a cooperating witness. But they still can and possibly threaten her with filing a false police report. You have several options and should hire an attorney to protect both your interests.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/10/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    It's up to the prosecuting attorney. Hire an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2012
    Leonard A. Kaanta, P.C. | Leonard A. Kaanta
    The current policy of most prosecutors is to prosecute domestic violence assaults. Standard policy is that the first one to report an assault is the victim. You need to talk to with your attorney about your self defense defense.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2012
    Jeffrey S. Kaplan | Jeffrey S. Kaplan
    First and foremost, you need to speak to an attorney in your jurisdiction about the specifics of your case. If you cannot afford an attorney, ask the court to appoint one for you. Second, your girlfriend doesn't have authority to drop charges. The charges are brought by the state or local prosecutor. She can choose not to testify, but the prosecutor may compel her to do so. To answer your question in general terms, there is no simple method for having charges dropped. Whether the prosecutor decides to prosecute or not depends on the evidence at his/her disposal. Before you go to trial (or accept a plea deal) you are entitled to a preliminary examination in which the prosecutor must provide sufficient evidence to show that a crime was committed and that you were the person who committed it. At the preliminary exam you can challenge the prosecutor's evidence, present your own witnesses, and at the end of the exam move to dismiss the charges for lack of evidence. A preliminary exam can be waived and, in some cases, should be waived, but you should not try to conduct a preliminary exam yourself. You need to be represented by an attorney who can advise you on the best course of action based on the specifics of your case. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/9/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Hire and attorney and hope that they can do the job in not having the case prosecuted. The police do not like to be called in such situation and, once involved, do not drop the charges. However, from the facts presented it would appear that you are claiming innocence and may have a defense.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2012
    The Law Office of Scott M. Aaronson, PLLC | Scott Aaronson
    Generally you can either do it through a first offender program (where you complete probation and upon completion the charges are set as nonpublic), by being found not guilty at trial, or if the victim doesn't show up and the prosecutor feels he needs the victim to continue with the case.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/19/2012
Click to View More Answers: