Defending Women Accused of Domestic Violence
As the enforcement of domestic violence laws has increased, so too has the rate at which women are arrested for domestic violence crimes. Recent studies show that about 25% of persons arrested for domestic violence in the United States are female (although that number is slightly lower in the State of Florida).
Although a woman is certainly capable of committing an act of domestic violence against a man, many of these cases involve false allegations.
Over the years, the attorneys at Sammis Law Firm have represented women who were falsely accused of domestic violence while defending themselves against a partner who had repeatedly abused them over the years. Some women are repeatedly victimized by a partner before being further victimized by the criminal justice system.
If an intimate partner is willing and able to physically abuse another person, then it is not hard to imagine a circumstance in which an intimate partner would make a false police report. In fact, false allegations of domestic violence are a form of abuse and control that can be just as damaging (if not more damaging) than physical abuse.
When the police respond to a domestic violence call, they often strictly adhere to their pro-arrest policies without examining the context of the incident or the prior difficulties between the parties.
Attorneys for Women Arrested for Domestic Violence in Tampa, FL
Over the years, our criminal defense attorneys have represented women charged with a wide variety of domestic violence charges from simple battery to aggravated battery. After an arrest for domestic violence, contact an experienced attorney at Sammis Law Firm.
Many of our clients have a successful career and have never been in trouble with the law before.
The stakes are high when defending a woman charged with a first offense of domestic violence battery in Hillsborough County, FL. From our second office in New Port Richey, FL, we represent women accused of domestic violence in Pasco County, FL.
We represent men and women charged with domestic violence in Tampa and Plant City in Hillsborough County, FL, as well as the surrounding areas throughout the greater Tampa Bay area including Hernando County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, Manatee County, Sarasota County, and Polk County, FL.
Call (813) 250-0500 to discuss your case.
Allegations of Domestic Violence by a Man
Women should keep in mind that there are valid defenses to domestic violence charges in Florida, including self-defense, defense of others, or defense of property. If the alleged victim was the primary aggressor in the offense, it can often be shown that his injuries were defensive in nature.
In other words, if a man grabbed your arm to push you against the wall, and you scratched his face in the process of protecting yourself, his injury may show up immediately, while your bruises may not show up until hours after your arrest. Women are particularly vulnerable to false allegations of domestic violence by an abusive and controlling partner.
Women in abusive relationships are particularly vulnerable if they have children with their abusers. Because women tend to be physically weaker than their abusive partner, women can also be arrested for using a weapon to protect themselves leading to felony charges of aggravated assault or other felony forms of domestic violence.
Additionally, the past difficulties between the parties or prior acts of domestic violence can often be used to show that the woman was acting in self-defense during the incident that resulted in her arrest.
In many of these cases, the woman has previously been the victim of domestic violence at the hands of the man that is now making the accusation of domestic violence.
It is particularly important to prevent the false allegations of domestic violence from being used as another means of controlling and victimizing a woman who was attempting to defend herself during an argument with an abusive partner.
Battered Women Syndrome in Florida
Expert testimony on Battered Spouse Syndrome, formerly called Battered Women Syndrome, is admissible as a defense to a criminal accusation in Florida when a qualified expert can testify that the person accused was suffering from the syndrome at the time the incident occurred.
Most people think this defense can only be used in a murder case, however, it can also be successfully asserted in less serious cases of domestic violence such as a battery or aggravated battery.
Defending women against false allegations of domestic violence is particularly important because false allegations can later be used against the woman in a child custody dispute or divorce action, even years after the incident.
If you were arrested for domestic violence or domestic battery (including domestic violence by strangulation) in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Bartow, Dade City, Plant City or New Port Richey or the surrounding areas, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney that is experienced representing women against false accusations of domestic violence.
At Sammis Law Firm, we represent women charged with domestic violence in Hillsborough County, Polk County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, and Hernando County, FL.
Domestic Violence within the LGTBQ Community
The movement for domestic violence awareness focuses on heterosexual relationships. As a result, law enforcement officers often have inadequate training for investigating cases within the LGTBQ community. Inadequate training might result in the wrong person being arrested for domestic violence while the primary aggressor goes free.
Domestic violence occurs in all kinds of families. Lesbian women do report acts of physical violence being perpetrated by a lesbian partner (often called “lesbian partner violence”). Several studies indicate that lesbian couples have similar rates of domestic violence when compared to heterosexual couples.
When the police arrive, a woman in a lesbian and bisexual relationship might have a harder time being open about their sexual orientation or the nature of the relationship. Law enforcement officers might have a bias against lesbians or transgender victims that prevents them from properly investigating the case.
Same-sex couples are not prohibited from obtaining a protective order in Florida. The law applies equally to opposite-sex couples or same-sex couples.
The Paradox of Women Arrested for Domestic Violence – This scholarly article helps criminal justice professionals and service providers respond appropriately to false allegations of domestic violence made by a man against a woman. The article address concerns about violence against women when their abuser makes false allegations to maintain control over the person being abused.
This article was last updated on Friday, July 24, 2020.