In Washington State a call to police regarding an allegation of domestic violence can lead to significant and immediate consequences – consequences that may never have been intended by the 911 caller or even by the alleged victim, if different from the caller. Once a person has been accused of domestic violence in Washington State, he/she should ensure that he/she does not go through the legal process alone; it is a minefield that can realistically only be navigated by the most seasoned and adept Washington State domestic violence attorney. Below is a general synopsis of what is likely to happen if police are called to an alleged domestic violence scene:
(1) The Police are legally obligated, or otherwise required, to arrest and take to jail anyone accused of domestic violence if the police contact the parties within four hours of when the crime allegedly occurred.
(2) The Police will arrest the person they decide is the primary aggressor in the incident. Often, the determination of who was the primary aggressor is made with little to no investigation; in fact, the decision is generally made on no more than a few simple things like a person’s size or gender, or who told a better story or who appeared more believable.
(3) A person charged with a domestic violence related allegation is required to appear at all court proceedings. There are usually several times an accused must appear in court; the loss of time at work and/or school can be significant no matter what the outcome of the case may be.
(4) It is likely that a person accused of a domestic violence related crime will be required to post a bail; those costs typically range from hundreds to even thousands of dollars.
(5) Courts are likely to issue a No Contact Order which prohibits an accused from having any contact with the alleged victim and possibly others involved in the incident such as children and/or other relatives. The No Contact Order may also include a prohibition of one’s presence in places, such as his/her home, business or even school.
(6) Courts are likely to issue an order mandating that an accused surrender any and all weapons that he/she owns; the weapons, depending on the outcome of the case, may be forfeited, and if a person is convicted of any domestic violence related offense he/she will lose his/her right to possess a firearm for life pursuant to federal laws and regulations.
Because of the grave consequences associated with domestic violence related allegations, it is of paramount importance that a person accused of committing a crime involving domestic violence have a strong and articulate advocate on his/her side. Washington State domestic violence cases often involve complex family dynamics that require a true understanding of the circumstances surrounding the facts and issues that gave rise to the police being called in the first place. The parties’ story often needs to be conveyed to the prosecution and to the court in a manner that can be understood and accepted; it needs to be conveyed in a manner that can be appreciated, without passing judgment. The Seattle criminal attorneys that make up the criminal defense team of SQ Attorneys have the ability and the passion to accomplish just this goal. SQ Attorneys is a collection of Washington State litigators with a stellar reputation for being highly effective Seattle domestic violence defense lawyers; they are dedicated to providing top notch, aggressive representation for those arrested for domestic violence in and around Western Washington and the greater Puget Sound region. The team is designed to create success by working with law enforcement and the prosecuting attorney’s office so as to ensure that all facts and circumstances related to the criminal allegations brought against the accused are considered in creating the fairest, most equitable and just resolution possible in light of all the surrounding circumstances. If accused of domestic violence in Washington State, protect your rights – contact SQ Attorneys.