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Can an alleged victim drop domestic violence charges?

On Behalf of | Oct 27, 2023 | Domestic Violence

Whether a quarrel got out of hand or there was a complete misunderstanding that led to your arrest, facing domestic violence charges is understandably distressing. A conviction could derail your career, damage your reputation, destroy your relationship with your family and more.

If you’re thinking that you can simply talk to your spouse or significant other about the issue, straighten everything out and ask them to drop the charges, however – think again.

It’s the state, not the alleged victim, who has the control

The prosecutor’s office is the one who is pursuing charges against you, not the victim. In fact, the Morgan Country Prosecutor’s Office has a “no drop” policy in place where domestic violence cases are involved.

Once the charges have been filed, you simply have to see the process through to the end. Your alleged victim cannot simply recant their story and have the charges dropped.

Any contact from you could be a violation of a no contact order

If you’re under a no contact order after your arrest (and you probably are) you need to adhere to its terms. Even if the domestic violence case is eventually dismissed for some reason, you can still be convicted of violating the no contact order if you directly or indirectly contact the alleged victim.

This means that you cannot visit, call, text, email, write or message the person you’re accused of abusing in any way. Even so much as a “like” on social media would be a violation of the order. So would asking a friend or relative to act as an intermediary and pass a message on.

You could even end up charged with witness tampering or intimidation

Should you decide to take a chance and contact the alleged victim anyhow to ask them not to testify against you, that could easily be construed as witness tampering. Should anybody make threats to retaliate against the alleged victim on your behalf, that’s a Level 6 felony.

If you’re in this kind of situation, you need to be proactive about your defense options. Seeking experienced legal guidance can help.