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  1. #1
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    Apr 2012
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    Default Boyfriend Charged With Domestic Assault, Out on Bond

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Texas

    My boyfriend and I got into an argument. He had been drinking and I went to turn off the computer (he was playing a computer game) because he was ignoring me and when I did he pushed me away. I tripped and fell on my butt and he proceeded to drag me by my arms across the living room. I filed a police report the next day. They took a picture of a little bruise I had on my arm but I told them I didn't know if it was from him or not. I told them I didn't want to press charges or have him arrested. I just wanted it documented. The next day they go to his work and arrest him. He bonded out later that day and now won't talk to me about what's going on. I am 35 weeks pregnant and the baby can come any day now. Is he not talking to me because his lawyer told him no contact? If so, can I still go over to our place and tell him when I go into labor? Can he be there for the delivery of our son??? How can we get the case dismissed or not have the DA press charges? How do I find out who his lawyer is? What should be my next step? Thank you.

  2. #2

    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    Quote Quoting Nefertiri
    View Post
    I told them I didn't want to press charges or have him arrested. I just wanted it documented.
    It doesn't work that way. If you notify a law enforcement officer that a crime has been committed, they are obligated to act upon that report. When a crime is committed, ALL members of society are considered to be victims. Therefore, you do not have the authority to "allow" a crime to occur, even if you are the immediate victim. You reported a crime. They acted accordingly.


    Is he not talking to me because his lawyer told him no contact?
    That's possible. It's equally possible that the COURT issued an order forbidding him from contact with you until the criminal case is concluded.



    If so, can I still go over to our place and tell him when I go into labor?
    Sure. There's currently nothing to prevent you from doing anything. But be aware that if there's a no contact order in place, and you two are seen together, you risk sending him to jail, again, if such an order exists and he violates it. You might want to contact the office of the clerk of the court, criminal division, and find out if such an order exists.


    Can he be there for the delivery of our son???
    Unless there's a court order to the contrary.


    How can we get the case dismissed or not have the DA press charges?
    You can express your desire that the case not be pursued, but again, the DA acts on behalf of ALL members of society, so whether you desire prosecution or not, the DA can still move forward with the case if they choose to do so. Given that any domestic violence case takes on much more gravity when the victim is pregnant, the DA may be reluctant to drop it. All you can do it ask. All HE can do is whatever his attorney advises him to do.



    How do I find out who his lawyer is?
    If he hires an attorney, ask him. If he qualifies for a public defender, he'll be appointed one out of the public defender's office.


    What should be my next step?
    Depends on what you want to accomplish. If you want him to have a kick butt attorney, then go pay for one for him (keeping in mind that doing so will not give you access to that attorney or information about the case, because you would not be the client). If you want the DA to know where you stand, contact the DAs office and talk with the victim advocate. You have the right, under the law, to have your wishes heard concerning the case, and the advocate can assure that your voice gets heard (again, being aware that the prosecutor has more reason to pursue the case than to drop it, no matter how much you object - courts take even the SLIGHTEST injury against a pregnant woman very seriously). Beyond that, the situation is out of your hands.

    You might spend some of this "alone time" thinking about how to be part of PREVENTING such problems between you two in the future, since any subsequent "problems" like this could result in you loosing custody of your child. While he absolutely had no right to lay his hands on you (which is why he's being charged with a crime)....

    I went to turn off the computer (he was playing a computer game) because he was ignoring me
    ... you might want to understand how your own actions contributed to the situation, and figure out how to either better address such problems in the future, or to get the attention you crave in a way that isn't going to involve the police. He reacted to the situation with a poor (and illegal) response. But if YOU don't do some changing, and figure out some much healthier responses to your need for attention than provoking him, you BOTH risk the situation recurring - or you risk facing it again in your NEXT relationship, and the next, and the next. The only thing that remains the same about every relationship you're in, is that YOU are in it. While he's getting whatever help a court orders him to get, do yourself and your child a favor and get some help for yourself with this particular issue. It's not healthy - and it's not going to end well if you don't take steps to find and practice better adult mechanisms of communication within your relationships. Your local domestic violence program can likely point you to individual or group resources in your area.

    PS. for those interested in such things, this case is a small sample of what David Luckenbill of the U of CA calls a "situated transaction", a dynamic incredibly prevalent in domestic violence - especially in cases ending in homicide - where the vicitim is not in a passive, noncontributory role, but is part of a dynamic exchange, where the victim "starts" an exchange, and the other party reacts with a level, nature, and degree of force they deem necessary to "win" the exchange (up to and including that victory coming with the injury or death of the victim). JSTOR.org and probably NCJRS.gov have the full research/article available.
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Boyfriend Charged With Domestic Assault, Out on Bond

    Not only would I not talk to you, I would shun you like the plague. You really showed him who was boss didn't you!!!
    Dear Santa. For Xmas this year I want a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix them up again.
    Why do stores in the US have so many undocumented shoppers?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    When I went into the police station they told me I could just document it and he wouldn't be arrested. That's why I continued to file the report.

    If there is a court order, How can I get rid of it?

    Can I contact the public defender's office and find out who his lawyer is and speak to him?

    I know I was in the wrong and I've admitted that to the police and the DA investigators. If I wouldn't have gone to turn off the Computer then he would have never touched me. I know now that walking away is the best solution.

    Would him going to AA meetings or counseling for his anger help get the case dismissed?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Boyfriend Charged With Domestic Assault, Out on Bond

    This is not between you and him. It is between the state and him, much as I suspect your child rearing will be, if he has a choice.
    Dear Santa. For Xmas this year I want a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix them up again.
    Why do stores in the US have so many undocumented shoppers?

  6. #6

    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    Quote Quoting Nefertiri
    View Post
    When I went into the police station they told me I could just document it and he wouldn't be arrested. That's why I continued to file the report.
    Unfortunately, police get to lie to you about stuff like that. Their concern isn't to provide you with documentation. Their concern is to address the criminal act, and hopefully prevent FUTURE criminal acts.


    If there is a court order, How can I get rid of it?
    If there was an order issued by a judge as part of the criminal case, that order generally stays in place until the criminal case is disposed. You need to be aware that since you reported a crime of violence against you and your unborn child, that now asking for the person you told police commited the crime against you both to be allowed to be around you again is going to immediately put the court on notice that such decisions may endanger your child. You really need to consult with an attorney of your own, a family law attorney, BEFORE you consider approaching the court about lifting the order. Doing so could be a very costly mistake down the road should CPS be involved at any future time, and you put your custody of your child at risk.

    Can I contact the public defender's office and find out who his lawyer is and speak to him?
    You can ask. They are not obligated to speak to you.


    Would him going to AA meetings or counseling for his anger help get the case dismissed?
    Not likely dismissed. DA's don't usually base charges or dropping on such things - not when they're holding a photo of a pregnant woman with abruise. That's basically gold in a courtroom in a criminal case, and DAs don't get paid to drop, they get paid to get convictions. But it absolutely COULD make a BIG difference when it comes to sentencing - if the judge is thinking about incarceration or not, or how long, the more he does to show the court that he understands the wrongness of his actions and the poor way he chose to react to his anger, that can only help. If alcohol played a part, AA could be helpful too. If alcohol didn't play a part, his time and money are probably better spent elsewhere, at least for now. Judges often like when defendants take initiative to get themselves some help before the court has to order it.
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

  7. #7
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    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    I haven't been able to find out if there is a case against him or not. I don't know what has happened since he bonded out because he isn't talking to me (understandable). What would be happening on his end as the one who got arrested? How do I prove that the bruise wasn't from him?

  8. #8

    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    What would be happening on his end as the one who got arrested?
    He'd be awaiting his next court date, and hopefully speaking to and retaining an attorney.


    How do I prove that the bruise wasn't from him?
    You don't. You don't prove or disprove anything. It's not your case. The burden is on the DA to prove where the bruise came from (assuming they feel the need to use that evidence), using things like the photos, testimony from the officers who responded to the scene, etc. If you told the officers he caused the bruise, that's what the officers are going to testify to.
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

  9. #9
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    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    I didn't tell them it was from him. They just took pictures of anything they could find. If they do file a case and I don't testify, how likely is it that it will be dismissed?

  10. #10

    Default Re: What to Do After I File a Report and He Bonded from Jail

    Depends on whether you are subpoena'd to appear or not. The decision to testify or not isn't up to you. The DA probably knows that like a majority of DV cases, you're prepared to do whatever it takes to keep him out of jail, and for that reason, DAs are experts at NOT using victims to make the crux of their DV cases whenever possible. However, if the DA gets the court to issue a subpoena ordering you to testify, you'll either testify as ordered, or, get to deal with it when the court issues a warrant for your arrest for failure to appear (in addition to prompting the court to keep any no contact order firmly in place). And before you even consider not appearing if ordered to, arrests on warrants often happen at the MOST inopportune times, and sitting in jail while pregnant has just got to suck.

    He made this bed when he chose the reaction of putting his hands on you. He'll now have to lay in that bed as the case works it's way through the system. Your role in the matter was at the beginning when you reported, and will only come in two other possible places later; either when you testify (if called to do so), and at any sentencing hearing, where the law again provides that you, as the victim, are guaranteed a voice before the court prior to any sentence being passed (and just like with the DA, the final decision will still be up to the judge).
    Catherine NeSmith
    Executive Director
    AARDVARC.org, Inc.
    http://www.aardvarc.org

    Fave Big Bang Theory site: Sheldon Cooper Fans

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