Prosecuting a Maryland Domestic Violence Case
The prosecution in a Maryland domestic violence cases must prove that the crime someone is being charged with was a domestic matter. They must prove an offense took place and that the offensive contact that was not committed by accident. It was not a mutual fray where both parties had the intent to fight. Perhaps it was self-defense. Perhaps an individual was attacked, but the aggressor filed charges against them.
When someone has a compelling story, is a believable person, and their story seems to make sense, that can be a challenge for the prosecution in a domestic violence in Maryland. If the judge finds the story to be compelling and believes the person is a trustworthy witness, they may believe the statements are true and find the client guilty. Finding an experienced domestic violence attorney for your defense may be vital to the outcome of your case.
Deciding to Bring Forward a Case
Reports brought forth by prosecutors in a Maryland domestic violence case come in one of two ways. Someone makes a phone call to 911 and the police arrive at a domestic violence scene or someone goes to a commissioner or a courthouse and files charges. The prosecutor must assess the written or spoken statements of the individuals, observations made by officers, photographs, and reports to determine whether the case is viable. The judge must decide if the case has enough substance to further pursue what may be a criminal matter, then they prosecute and seek a conviction.
Benefits of Taking the Stand
One of the biggest potential benefits of a prosecutor putting an alleged victim on the stand is that they must call this individual. The prosecution in a Maryland domestic violence case cannot have a case without that person testifying. It would be rare at best. The only way to get around that is when the person refuses to testify and they are a protected party, as they can invoke a Fifth Amendment right or an immunity right.
However, if the alleged victim gave recorded or written statements and photographs were taken, the defense lawyer can use medical professionals and officers or counselors who interviewed the person at the time of the incident to show that this did not happen. The downside is that this takes place in court. The alleged victim must take the stand to make statements.
When someone files the charge on their own without the police, they must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that they were assaulted. They have to provide specific evidence. A defense lawyer can impeach them if they know the person is lying or is not giving real evidence. There is always a benefit to being able to cross-examine the individual who says they were assaulted.
The prosecution of Maryland domestic violence cases should all be evidence-based. It is a set of practices used by prosecutors to convict abusers without the cooperation of the alleged victim in domestic violence cases. The prosecution proceeds with a case using physical evidence and the testimonies of witnesses. When prosecutors have direct evidence that is not speculation, it is important for them to layer that into their case.
Defense from a Lawyer
Domestic violence lawyers defend a person by taking away the credibility of the witnesses. Witnesses must testify under oath. They are supposed to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. They are a party that antagonizes and hit the person first. There is no excuse to hit someone back, but a witness loses credibility to the prosecution in a Maryland domestic violence case if they started the event.
The lawyer can use the defense that the person accused of domestic violence was defending against imminent harm.A lawyer who has a good relationship with the local prosecution can have a conversation and get as much evidence from the state’s attorney as possible. If a person cannot talk to a state’s attorney or be available for the conversation, there is little chance to work things out with the prosecution.
Cases do not always have to go to trial. A defense lawyer should get as much evidence and conversation together to get their client to get a good decision. An attorney should be advocating for their client while the other attorney tries prosecuting the domestic violence case. Advocating begins with getting all the evidence and having communication with the client and the state. Having a local lawyer who has a good relationship with the local prosecution means they can have a conversation with the state’s attorney and get as much evidence as possible. If a person cannot talk to a state’s attorney or be available for the conversation, there is little chance to work things out with the prosecution.