How To Drop Domestic Violence Charges In New York
One of the most frequent questions our Westchester domestic violence lawyers hear is what do I do if I had my husband arrested and I want to drop the charges? Unfortunately People who live together as a family get often get into situations in which the police are called and someone is charged with a crime. All too often overzealous prosecutors and Judges want to impose their views of what should happen onto the family, often with disasterous consequences. The state of New York has recognized that these charges can lead to the destruction of the family and do more harm than good. New York has enacted Family Ct Act § 812 and the Criminal Procedure Law §530.11 which allow victims of domestic violence to elect to seek protection in the family court to stop the violence and avoid having the family member face a prosecution which could result in a criminal conviction. This provision is a powerful tool for New York City domestic violence attorneys who represent the victim and just wants to stop the charges
§530.11 of the New York Criminal Procedure Law provides the procedure for family offenses and it is applicable if the acts would constitute disorderly conduct, harassment in the first degree, harassment in the second degree, aggravated harassment in the second degree, sexual misconduct,
forcible touching, sexual abuse in the third degree, sexual abuse in the second degree (subdivision one) stalking in the first degree, stalking in the second degree, stalking in the third degree, stalking in the fourth degree, criminal mischief,
menacing in the second degree, menacing in the third degree, reckless endangerment, strangulation in the first degree, strangulation in the second degree, criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, assault in the second degree, assault in the third degree, an attempted assault,
identity theft in the first degree, identity theft in the second degree,
identity theft in the third degree, grand larceny in the fourth degree,
grand larceny in the third degree or coercion in the second degree.
For purposes of the section, members of the same family or household is defined to mean persons related by consanguinity or affinity, persons legally married to one another, persons formerly married to one another,
persons who have a child in common, and persons who have been in an intimate relationship.
Significantly, §530.11 provides that the compliant is to be notified that a family court proceeding is a civil proceeding and is for the purpose of attempting to stop the violence, end family disruption and obtain protection while a proceeding in the criminal courts is for the purpose of prosecution of the offender and can result in a criminal conviction of the offender.
Furthermore, §530.11 provides that at the complainant first appears before the court on a complaint or information, the court shall advise the complainant that the complainant may: continue with the proceeding in criminal court, or have the allegations contained therein heard in a family court proceeding, or proceed concurrently in both criminal and family court.
Family disputes and arguments regularly occur and sometimes result in the police being called. It is important to be aware of your rights in such circumstances. Our criminal defense lawyers have represented family members in these situations. Consultations are always free.