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Domestic Violence Charges and Injunctions

A crime is considered domestic violence if the alleged victim and defendant are related, have a child together, or share a living space. When law enforcement is called to a domestic violence scene, they are required to either arrest or at least separate the parties if they sense something happened. Many times the 911 caller just wants an officer to talk to or scare the other, but because of protocol, an arrest is made. Because of this, charges often are filed when the "victim" never wanted to press charges in the first place. When this occurs, we can have the alleged victim file a waiver of prosecution, which is an affidavit filed with the court and state saying he or she does not wish to press charges or testify against the arrestee. Many times this can lessen or cause to be dismissed the charges. In the end it’s the state of Florida that presses charges, and the alleged victim that acts as their chief witness, meaning the state may still prosecute if they wish.


Mark has extensive experience in domestic violence criminal defense as he served as a prosecutor in the DV unit with the Broward County state attorney’s office. This unique experience has been invaluable in defending DV cases, as he knows the prosecutors, knows the judge’s involved, and especially, knows how the cases will most likely play out.

Often called restraining orders, injunctions are a court order to not have contact with another. They are civil matters, but violating an injunction can lead to criminal charges. The party filing for the injunction is called the Petitioner, and the opposing party the Respondent. When a Petitioner files for an injunction regarding domestic violence, he or she must state at least one event that proves she is a victim of domestic violence, or has reason to believe she will be a victim in the near future. If not a DV relationship between the parties, the Petitioner must state 2 events that proves she is a victim of violence, or has reason to believe she will be a victim in the near future. Once submitted to the clerk's office, a sitting judge will decide that same day whether to grant the petition and order a Temporary Injunction. Regardless, whether granted or not, a final hearing will be set in 14 days from that date. If granted, the temporary order will state the conditions the Respondent must follow, i.e., do not come within 500 feet of Petitioner. At the final hearing, there is no jury, and it's the parties and judge in the courtroom. The judge will ask the petitioner why a final injunction should be granted, and to present evidence to prove their case. As well, the Respondent will have the opportunity to present their case. The judge will then either grant a final injunction or deny it. If granted, a time limit will be ordered as well, meaning the injunction may last 1 year, 2 years, or for an indefinite amount of years if the allegations are that egregious.


Mark and Carla have extensive experience in injunction hearings, and are willing and ready to fight for your rights in court. Call us today to discuss your options and possible outcomes.


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