Frequently, when someone is arrested for assault the victim wants to drop the charges. This blog explains why that is more difficult than it sounds and why trying might just be a huge mistake.
Why Can’t the Victim Just Drop the Charges?
The other day, one of our attorneys was standing at the window to the District Attorney’s Office. At that window the attorney was trying to pick up discovery, but also found himself listening to the receptionist answering the phones. While he was there the phone rang. The receptionist answered and cheerily told the caller that it was impossible for her to drop charges with a simple phone call. Instead, the receptionist would be happy to put her through to a victim advocate who set her up for an appointment.
Our attorney knew exactly what would happen at that appointment. The victim advocate would listen and smile and be friendly. At the end they would explain, politely, that they could not drop the charges, that it was too late for that. They could, probably, put their loved one on deferred adjudication, or probation and make sure they don’t spend anymore time in jail. At the end of the meeting the alleged victim would probably be served with a subpoena, and all chances of getting their loved one’s case dismissed would promptly disappear.
But why? If a victim wants an assault case dropped why won’t the State listen and drop the case? The answer is complicated but, simply put, once the State of Texas is involved, the victim of the assault is no longer the most important party to the case. The State of Texas believes, especially in Bexar County, that victims of assault cases do not know what is best for them. The State of Texas believes that the victim is trapped in a cycle of violence. As a result, reconciliation (without resolving underlying issues) is part of that cycle and so they do not feel obligated to follow your instructions when you ask that your case get dismissed.
Instead, they believe that this request is proof that you are trapped (psychologically) in a cycle of abuse and will treat the request as a reason to pursue the case.
Can A Victim Get an Assault Case Dismissed?
Yes. But not by working with the State. You need to hire a lawyer who will protect your loved one (and yourself). At The Locke Law Group we work with your loved one and with the alleged victim and teach them how to deal with the State so that we (as your loved one’s attorney) can get their case dismissed. At The Locke Law Group we recommend that couples who have experienced violence in their relationships go to counseling on their own. Our clients experience second arrests a lot less frequently than those who participate in the State’s community supervision. The reason? We work to do everything possible to make sure that everyone emerges from the criminal justice system intact. We know that you know what is best for your family, and not the State of Texas. We will work with you to get you your best possible result. Give us a call at (210) 361-3113 today!