The state of Florida has little tolerance for domestic violence. While it’s an admirable goal to end real domestic violence, unfortunately, many people are wrongly accused all the time. If you’ve been accused of or are facing domestic violence charges in St. Petersburg, retain a defense attorney at Goldman Wetzel who will begin working on your case immediately.
The Changing Face of Domestic Violence
In times past, the most common type of domestic violence complaints were made by wives against their husbands. Times have evolved, and there are now numerous types of domestic violence complaints made by various family members.
Our defense attorneys have come across all kinds of cases that all fall under domestic violence. Below are some examples:
- Wives accused of violence against husbands,
- Parents accused of child abuse,
- Boyfriends accusing girlfriends,
- Girlfriends accusing boyfriends,
- Same-sex couple abuse, and
- Children accused of violence against parents.
What Domestic Violence Is — and What It Isn’t
The Florida Statutes 741.28(2) defines domestic violence as any “criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.” Examples of crimes that are labeled as domestic violence are listed below:
- Aggravated assault,
- Aggravated battery,
- Sexual assault,
- Sexual battery,
- Aggravated stalking,
- Kidnapping, and
- False imprisonment.
Far too many people are slapped with domestic violence charges without justifiable cause. In many cases, it’s because one partner wants to “get back at” the other or because one spouse wants to gain leverage in a divorce. Sometimes, an argument simply gets loud, and a neighbor calls law enforcement.
To be clear, there are many actions that are not considered domestic violence and do not merit charges. The following are not illegal:
- Yelling or screaming at your partner;
- Minor pushing;
- Rough consensual sex;
- Restraining your partner to prevent him/her from hurting himself/herself or someone else;
- Blocking the path of your partner or household member;
- Reacting violently when awakening from a nightmare;
- Saying hurtful things to your spouse or cursing at him or her; and
- Using self-defense to prevent your partner from attacking you.
Defending against Domestic Violence Charges in St. Petersburg
Domestic violence convictions can lead not only to no contact orders and lengthy counseling, but also jail time. Furthermore, a conviction can severely damage your reputation, hurt your standing at your job and stay on your criminal record indefinitely. This is why it’s crucial to fight these charges — and to do so with the help of a defense attorney.
That’s where our team at Goldman Wetzel comes in. We will fight aggressively on your behalf, pushing to have false or exaggerated charges dropped. We will use the impeccable strategies we’ve honed over the years and develop a defense that’s suitable for your given circumstances. Below are a few possible defenses for domestic violence charges that we may use.
- The police have the wrong suspect, i.e., you are not the culprit and can present an alibi.
- The accuser was lying. It was a deliberately false accusation.
- You acted in self-defense.
- Your actions were legal and do not fall under the state’s definition of domestic violence.
- The acts were consensual, e.g., consensual S&M.
- There is a lack of proof. (The prosecutor has the burden of proof. If there’s a lack thereof, we’ll push for a quick dismissal.)
Goldman Wetzel Can Help Fight the Charges
If you’ve been charged with domestic violence in St. Petersburg, we encourage you to contact our office to schedule a free consultation. We can explain your rights, try to present options to the prosecutors to have the charges dropped, and, if need be, provide you with solid representation in court. Contact us today at 727-828-3900.