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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    Default What Happens if a Domestic Violence Victim Ignores a Summons

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: SC

    This past November my fiancÚ and I had a bad argument. No one touched anyone throughout it but my older daughter was present and got upset so she called her grandfather. Eventually her grandmother (my mother) was called, by me and she called the police. The officers arrive and one spoke to my fiancÚ the other spoke with me. As he spoke with me he noticed my fingernail was partially torn (I have long natural nails) I told him it must've gotten torn when my fiancÚ grabbed my cell phone and that it was nothing serious and kept talking to him about the incident. This leads to my fiancÚ getting arrested for cdv minor assault due to my fingernail which I found completely absurd. The officer then tells me after they arrest him that if I didn't let him photograph my nail I would be arrested for obstruction. So I allowed him as I have two children and I couldn't go to jail that night also and have them be taken. My fiancÚ was released ROR and has a court date on the coming Wednesday. However I have also recieved a summons to appear at this court date. My fiancÚ was told by his public defender that if I do not appear his charges can get dropped. He has no prior criminal record and was in the Navy since graduating high school, recently ERB out last year September. I also have no record and am unfamiliar with the legal process. I need to know if I should ignore the summons or will I be arrested for failure to appear. I have no desire to help the DA and I have already filled out a drop slip with the solicitor office. I have consulted with one other local defense attorney and he said if I was not issued a subpoena that I should not appear. Will my showing up guarantee he gets convicted? Confused and need advice quickly. Also this is not a witness summons. It is a summons identical to the summons my fiancÚ recieved the only difference is my name is on this one which I find strange because if he is the defendant and I am the alleged victim why would I receive the same type of summons as if I am being charged with something too.

  2. #2
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    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: What Happens if a Domestic Violence Victim Ignores a Summons

    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    View Post
    I told him it must've gotten torn when my fiancÚ grabbed my cell phone and that it was nothing serious and kept talking to him about the incident.
    In other words, your fiancÚ is guilty of domestic violence, even if you choose to minimize the offense.
    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    My fiancÚ was told by his public defender that if I do not appear his charges can get dropped.
    You are telling us that, on the advice of his attorney, your fiancÚ is engaged in the crimes of witness tampering and obstruction of justice?
    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    I need to know if I should ignore the summons or will I be arrested for failure to appear.
    You are free to discuss your wishes with the prosecutor in charge of the case. The prosecutor may be willing to tell you how hard they will push for your presence, or if they believe they can prove the case in your absence. If your boyfriend confirmed to the police that he grabbed the phone out of your hands, they can potentially convict based upon that confession.
    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    I have consulted with one other local defense attorney and he said if I was not issued a subpoena that I should not appear.
    Why would a lawyer tell you that you should ignore a summons?
    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    Will my showing up guarantee he gets convicted?
    We have no way of telling you in advance what will happen at a trial.
    Quote Quoting Worrywart83
    Also this is not a witness summons. It is a summons identical to the summons my fiancÚ recieved the only difference is my name is on this one which I find strange....
    I can't see it from here, so I can't comment. Perhaps it's a court notice, not a summons. Why didn't you show it to your lawyer and ask him?

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