experienced domestic Violence lawyer
Huntington Beach Domestic Violence Lawyers
A domestic violence accusation is very serious. It can upend lives or an entire family. It’s not only a personal matter, but it is also a legal issue that can have long-term consequences if an individual is found to be guilty. When facing these types of allegations, having Huntington Beach domestic violence attorneys as your defense can make the difference between a fair resolution and a punishment that is not proportionate to what happened.
At the Law Offices of Lisa R. McCall, we have spent years defending clients who were accused of domestic violence. This experience has helped us understand the sensitivity and complexity of these cases. We have already helped many others who faced similar situations as your own, and our defense lawyers would be honored to help protect your rights and work toward as favorable of an outcome as possible.
Common Issues in Domestic Violence Cases
Domestic violence cases in Huntington Beach, CA offer a complex range of emotional, psychological, and legal factors that make them some of the most challenging issues to deal with in the criminal justice system. Because the consequences can be severe and long-term, it’s essential to work with an attorney to help defend your rights if you maintain a position of innocence.
Some common issues that arise in these cases and contribute to a domestic violence allegation include:
Not every allegation of domestic violence ends up being proven true. Sometimes, these accusations come from a misunderstanding or an emotional conflict. They may even be used inappropriately as leverage in other legal battles, such as a divorce.
When someone faces a false accusation, it puts more than just their freedom at risk. It also can be damaging to the individual’s reputation, career, and other relationships. By better understanding the motivations behind a false accusation, a domestic violence lawyer can work to uncover evidence to show the baseless nature of the claim.
Everyone in California has the right to defend themselves. However, when self-defense is claimed within the context of a domestic violence case, it complicates matters.
Investigators and attorneys must work together to assess what happened and try to distinguish if the defendant’s behavior was defensive or aggressive. Different forms of evidence, such as video footage or expert testimony, can help a judge and jury better understand if the response to the perceived threat was appropriate or excessive.
Misinterpretation of Actions
Sometimes, an action can be misconstrued as violent or threatening due to a misunderstanding or a scenario where emotions are running high. For example, a gesture made when someone is frustrated during an argument could be read as an attempt to intimidate someone or harm them. This can lead to a false accusation of domestic violence that will need to be dealt with, either through a settlement or in front of a California court.
Mental Health Issues
Some defense strategies involve bringing awareness to an accuser’s untreated mental illness when one exists. Certain patients suffering from conditions like schizophrenia may perceive threats differently than those who don’t suffer from these types of conditions. This can lead to a sincere, yet inaccurate, accusation of violence.
Domestic violence investigations intensify in complexity when it’s brought to everyone’s attention that drugs or alcohol were consumed during the incident. Because these substances can significantly impair someone’s perception and memory, it’s reasonable for authorities to question the reliability of either impaired individual’s account of the events. Instead, they must look for other sources of evidence to discover what happened.
If you are suspicious that you are being accused of violence as a form of revenge, this needs to be shared with an attorney immediately. Revenge can be a powerful motivator for an individual looking to seek harm, which is why having an attorney who can uncover evidence that protects your innocence from these false accusations is critical to keep yourself away from unnecessary prosecution.
These are, unfortunately just some of the many reasons why someone may inaccurately accuse another of committing domestic violence. If any of this sounds familiar, connect with an attorney to begin crafting your defense.
The Role of a Domestic Violence Defense Attorney
A defense attorney can help you in a variety of ways, including:
Defense attorneys have spent years learning the law of the land to protect the rights of their clients. They are able to step into an emotionally charged situation, assess the evidence objectively, and construct a compelling defense strategy against false accusations. This can be a huge relief to those who have been accused of an act and are struggling to prove their innocence.
A defense attorney knows what to look for when searching for useful evidence. As they piece everything together, they have a keen eye to find inconsistencies in the prosecution’s case. These include reviews of police reports, medical records, and other documentation that may be used to fuel a false allegation. Leveraging similar evidence from their own client is also necessary to build a strong defense.
There are a ton of different decisions to make in a domestic violence case. These can include deciding whether a plea deal or a court appearance is most appropriate. It could also include filing a motion to dismiss or reduce a specific charge. Attorneys are the individuals leading the way in each of these activities, as they spend time strategizing over every decision to ensure that it’s aligned with their client’s objectives.
If a case ends up in trial, it will be the responsibility of a defense attorney to represent their client in court. This includes cross-examining witnesses, challenging evidence live in the moment, and presenting their own persuasive arguments to the judge and jury. These litigation skills are arguably some of the most valuable assets that an attorney possesses, as they can have a dramatic impact on the outcome of a case.
There is some level of negotiation required to reach a plea bargain when one is necessary. This is where an attorney can also be of service, as they can help dismiss or reduce a charge through their negotiation skills. Often, this involves finding a particular position of strength in their client’s case and then leveraging that position for a more favorable outcome.
Q: What Should I Do If I Have Been Falsely Accused of Domestic Violence?
A: If you have recently been accused of domestic violence, it’s important to not confront the accuser directly. Rather, seek immediate help from legal counsel. A qualified domestic violence lawyer can advise you through each step of the legal process, including how to legally collect evidence and avoid any actions that could be misconstrued in court.
Your attorney can then work directly with you to build a defense strategy to help preserve your rights and reputation against the charges. They can represent this position, either in court or a settlement, and work to ensure that you receive the most favorable outcome possible for your case.
Q: How Can a Domestic Violence Accusation Impact My Child Custody Case?
A: Any accusation of domestic violence will be taken seriously and influence your child custody proceedings. One of the most important priorities of the court is the welfare of any child caught in the middle of a custody battle.
If there is any evidence to even suggest that there is a possibility that an allegation of domestic abuse is true, the court has the right to temporarily restrict or terminate a parent’s custody or visitation arrangement until the domestic violence case has closed. To expedite the domestic violence case, a defense lawyer can ensure that every bit of paperwork and client obligation is met to avoid any unnecessary delay.
Q: What Is the Difference Between a Domestic Violence Misdemeanor and Felony Charges in Domestic Violence Cases?
A: The most significant distinctions between a domestic violence misdemeanor and felony charges are the severity of the act, its physical impact, and the accused’s criminal history.
Misdemeanor charges are typically the consequence of a more minor act of violence or threat, like a pushing or shoving incident that did not result in any injuries. More serious allegations, such as physical assault or sexual abuse, are classified as felonies and require heftier punishments. A domestic violence lawyer can explain the implications of each while developing a defense strategy to properly represent their client.
Q: What Is the Statute of Limitations for Domestic Violence in California?
A: The official statute of limitations for domestic violence offenses in California is set to five years. This means that if an individual’s allegation happened over five years ago, there is no legal means to bring the charge up anymore.
This five-year mark was made following a legislative change in Senate Bill 273 in 2020 that extended the state’s original position by two extra years. It gives those who have been abused extra time to come forward while also balancing the need to make a case in a timely manner before evidence goes stale and memories fade.
Contact the Law Offices of Lisa R. McCall Today
If you have been accused of domestic violence, contact our defense attorneys today. At the Law Offices of Lisa R. McCall, we have a deep understanding of the complexities that make up domestic violence cases. Our team has the experience necessary to defend your rights throughout the entire process.