Domestic violence charges can have many long-term consequences for the person accused. A conviction could affect everything from their employment and living circumstances to their legal right to own a firearm or the future custody arrangements for their children. Despite being common charges, there is a lot of misinformation out there about domestic violence offenses.
Sometimes, domestic violence charges are the result of a spouse or intimate partner calling the police or filing a request for a protective order. The evidence they have of physical assault could be enough to convince prosecutors to take action. Other times, the police show up because someone completely uninvolved in the situation called and then the officer believes, based on the circumstances, that a crime occurred, so they arrest one of the people present.
For example, if your neighbor reports you for having a loud fight and the police arrive to see that your spouse has a split lip, they might arrest you even though both you and your wife insist that the injury occurred when she fell at her place of employment earlier in the day. Can the alleged victim in a domestic violence case ask the state not to prosecute?
The “no drop” policy means a victim has no influence on charges
There is psychological research that shows that even those suffering significant abuse at the hands of their spouse could recant statements about their injuries or otherwise try to downplay the severity of the abuse that they endured to help their spouse avoid a conviction.
Such actions make it harder for spouses truly not victimized by domestic violence to help a partner charged with a crime because the state has had to develop policies that keep victims from helping their abusers.
Nothing an alleged victim says to police or prosecutors after the state decides to press charges will alter that decision. The so-called no-drop policy takes control over domestic violence charges away from the alleged victims of domestic violence and instead places it in the hands of Texas prosecutors.
You will need to find another means of pushing back against the charges
Since your romantic partner can’t convince the prosecutor to drop the charges against you, you may need to look at other ways to defend yourself. Your criminal record and the circumstances that led to your arrest will have a strong influence on what defense strategy you should pursue.
The better you understand how the Texas criminal courts handle domestic violence allegations, the easier it will be to strategize for your defense.