Accusations of domestic violence happen every day, and can ruin lives. If a family member accused you of domestic violence, if police arrested you, or if you have charges pending, you need a team of domestic violence lawyers in Pinellas County on your side as soon as possible.
At Goldman Wetzel, we will go to work on your case straightaway and fight to ensure you receive fair treatment. Based on the facts of your case, we will fight to reduce the charges against you or have them dropped entirely. Call us today at 727-828-3900 to schedule a free case review, or for immediate help after the arrest of a loved one.
Understanding the Florida Domestic Violence Statutes
Florida Statute § 741.28(2) defines domestic violence as causing or threatening to cause physical harm to a family member or someone living in the same household. While this may seem broad, there are only about a dozen crimes that might fit into this definition. They include:
- Assault, battery, aggravated assault, aggravated battery
- Sex crimes
- False imprisonment
If you committed one of these crimes during an altercation with your spouse, family member, or another person living in your household, you may face domestic violence. We can help you understand the accusations or charges against you during your case review.
Causes of Wrongful Domestic Abuse Accusations in Pinellas County
Many family members have disagreements and even arguments, and only rarely does this turn into domestic violence. We regularly represent people who face domestic violence accusations when there is little evidence to support this type of charge. Some face charges simply because a verbal argument concerned neighbors, because there is a play for power between sparring former partners, or even because one person wants revenge on another after an ugly break up.
We understand what constitutes domestic violence under Florida law, and can help protect your rights if you are wrongly accused of this serious crime.
Examples of situations that might lead to wrongful accusations include:
- A verbal altercation with a family member and someone called police
- Rough consensual sex
- Blocking the path of someone who lives in your household
- Restraining someone to prevent injury to themselves or others
- Restraining someone for self defense
- Other measures of self-defense
We can help you understand the accusations against you, and whether they have merit. We can also collect evidence and formulate a plan to fight any unwarranted charges.
Enlisting the Help of a Domestic Violence Lawyer in Pinellas County
Because Florida takes domestic violence seriously, a conviction can lead to mandatory counseling, limited time with children and other family members, no contact orders, fines, and even jail time. It may tarnish your reputation, and pit some members of your family against others. A conviction also makes it more difficult to rent an apartment, get a job, or receive a state license in some trades. If at all possible, avoiding this type of conviction is your best bet.
The team at Goldman Wetzel goes to work on your case the moment you ask for our help. If you get us involved early enough, we might be able to get to the prosecution before it even files charges.
When this is not possible, we build a strong case in your defense, and use all available resources to clear your name. We make sure the prosecution gets to know you. This allows the prosecutor to put a face to a name, instead of thinking of you as “just another criminal.”
No matter if you are a wife accused of assault, a parent accused of child abuse, a boyfriend facing sexual battery charges, or a member of a same-sex couple facing kidnapping allegations, we can help you navigate the criminal justice process and counter any false charges against you.
Common Defenses Against Domestic Violence Allegations
While we build a strong case for each client based on the facts of their individual situation, there are some defenses we commonly use to fight domestic violence charges. These are effective strategies that allow us to ensure the charges against you have as little impact on your daily life as possible.
One of the most common ways we can stop a domestic violence accusation in its tracks is to push for dismissal of a false claim against you. The State Attorney’s office must present proof you committed a crime. If you were wrongly accused and there is no evidence to back up the allegation, we can push the prosecutor to dismiss the case as soon as possible.
Other common defenses we employ in domestic violence cases include:
- The police arrested the wrong person; someone else committed the illegal act
- The illegal act never happened; you were wrongfully accused
- You engaged in the acts, but they were consensual
- You acted in self-defense only
- Your actions do not meet the definition of domestic violence, according to Florida laws
Call Us Today About Your Pinellas County Domestic Violence Case
If you have been arrested for domestic violence in Pinellas County, you need a skilled defense team. Because Summer and Maribeth work together on every case, you get the benefit of two different mindsets considering how to approach your case.
We can help you understand your rights, and fight to have the charges against you reduced or dropped. If necessary, we can also represent you in court and present a solid case in your defense.
Call 727-828-3900 today to schedule a free consultation with Goldman Wetzel.