Domestic violence is a criminal offense where one household member willingly harms another. This includes a current or former spouse, a domestic or dating partner, or your child’s other parent.
Domestic violence can include:
- Bodily harm
- Sexual assault
- Violation of a restraining order
- Destruction of property
If you face a false allegation of domestic violence, it can be challenging to successfully contest them because the accusation is rooted in conscious lies rather than mistakes. Working with a reputable criminal defense attorney can help you get the charges dismissed.
What Penalties Do I Face if Convicted of Domestic Violence?
In Washington state, a judge can rule that domestic violence is a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the severity of the harm done and the perpetrator’s criminal history, and whether they used a weapon.
If a judge convicts you of a domestic violence misdemeanor, you can face:
- Up one year in prison
- Up to $5,000 in fines
- Mandatory counseling
In the case of a felony domestic violence conviction, the penalties can include:
- Up to 10 years in prison
- Up to $20,000 in fines
In Washington state, you may lose the following if convicted of either charge:
- The right to own a firearm
- Your concealed carry license
- Your job, especially if you work in the military, law enforcement, or public service
Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney as Soon as Possible
You should reach out to a lawyer right away when facing accusations, especially if you have already been arrested. Following a few basic tips can also help avoid legal complications.
If falsely accused of domestic violence, you should:
- Write down everything that happened while your memory is still fresh
- Avoid engaging or talking to the accusing party
- Reach out to a mental health professional if necessary
- Keep any relevant emails or text messages
Thanks to their thorough understanding of the law, an attorney can guide you through the legal process and help preserve your rights and freedom.
How Can My Lawyer Prove that the Allegations Are False?
If your accusations lead to a no-contact court order, make sure to respect it. This prevents you from speaking with your accuser. Going through the legal proceedings is your best chance of getting the charges dismissed.
False accusations can happen when the other party wants to:
- Get primary child custody and/or limit your visitation rights
- Obtain more substantial child or spousal support
- Destroy your career
- Wants to get back at you for something else impacting the marriage or divorce
Your criminal defense attorney can help establish that the other person is not telling the truth thanks to witnesses, medical documents, or other evidence. Your lawyer may also show that your accuser was under the influence of alcohol or other substances or that the police officer misinterpreted the events or incorrectly filed their report.
Are you facing false accusations of domestic violence in Tacoma or its surrounding areas? Contact Hester Law Group today at (253) 300-3034 to schedule an appointment!