Building a Defense for Domestic Violence Charges

Florida courts take domestic violence and related offenses seriously. If convicted, you could face mandatory minimum time behind bars in addition to fines, probation, and other penalties. In addition, an injunction for domestic violence could bar you from going back to your home or talking to your spouse or another victim.

At Goldman Wetzel, our Tampa criminal defense attorneys recommend giving us a call as soon as possible after your arrest. If we can get to work on your case early, we may be able to uncover evidence to prevent the State Attorney from filing charges against you. If not, we can get a head start on building a defense strategy for dealing with the accusations you face. Call us today at 727-828-3900 to learn more.

We Will Learn as Much as Possible About the Facts of Your Case and Your History

The first step we take when building a defense for domestic violence charges is to look into the incident in question and learn as much as possible about your case. This includes investigating:

  • The facts of your case
  • The circumstances that led to the altercation and your arrest
  • Your relationship to the victim
  • Your history of similar incidences with the victim or with other victims

The police report provides a key piece of evidence in these cases, but we will always listen to your side of the story and discuss your take on the situation as well. In some cases, we may be able to uncover evidence the police missed that clears your name, proves you acted in self-defense or illustrates the victim’s struggles with psychological problems.

Only when we have a better understanding of what led to your arrest can we begin to develop a defense and put a strategy in place. Let us look into your case and fight for the best possible outcome based on what happened.

We Develop Defense Strategies on a Case-by-Case Basis

Our experience, with Summer Goldman previously working in the prosecutor’s office and Maribeth Wetzel as a career defense attorney, means our team can better understand how the State Attorney’s Office may approach your case. We can review the facts and take an educated guess about how they will build a case against you. With the right defense, we can present strong evidence and reason with the prosecutors about dismissing or reducing your charges.

Every domestic violence case is different, so we build our defenses on a case-by-case basis. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Some of the possible defenses in this type of case include:


Many people come to us saying they were arrested for something they simply did not do. If this happened to you, we can take action to try to recover evidence to prove your whereabouts at the time the violent act occurred. If we can establish a strong alibi or otherwise prove you were not even present at the time, we may be able to clear your name.


Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for someone to claim their spouse, live-in partner, or family member battered them out of anger. While you may have done something to make your partner angry, it did not escalate to physical violence. We need to recover evidence to show their injuries are not consistent with their story.


In some cases, our clients admit to shoving, hitting, or otherwise acting violently to the victim. However, they claim the victim used violence first. It may be possible to prove this by the victim admitting to police they used violence, discovering defensive wounds on your body, or showing how the victim’s wounds indicate self-defense on your part.

Police Violated Your Rights

If the police violated your rights during your arrest or while in custody, some of the evidence they collected might not be admissible in court. This could happen because:

  • The police interrogated you but did not record the questioning.
  • The police refused your request for an attorney.
  • The police did not listen to your side of the story before arresting you.
  • The police did not question an eyewitness present during the alleged altercation.

Other Strategies to Get a More Favorable Outcome in Your Case

We can also attempt to use other strategies to get a more favorable outcome in your case. This includes:

  • Presenting evidence to get charges dismissed or reduced
  • Negotiating a plea deal for a lesser charge and lighter penalties
  • Negotiating for a probated sentence once you serve any applicable mandatory minimum sentence

Talk to a Member of the Goldman Wetzel Team About Your Case Today

If you face allegations of domestic violence in Tampa, Bradenton, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, or a nearby area, Goldman Wetzel can help. If you face serious violent misdemeanor or felony charges, you want a legal team on your side who can protect your rights and fight for your best interest. When you hire Goldman Wetzel, you get both of our attorneys on your case.

Call 727-828-3900 to learn more or get started today.