What Are My Rights if I’ve Been Accused of Domestic Violence in Alabama?

Domestic violence is a serious charge, and one that often comes with a variety of other related charges, such as assault and battery. Domestic violence laws in Alabama are quite serious, and anyone convicted of this crime may have to serve jail time, pay fines, lose their right to own firearms, and more. There have been some cases where people will accuse their spouse of domestic violence in an attempt to strengthen their case in a divorce proceeding. In addition to being morally reprehensible, this can have serious and long-lasting consequences for the person being accused. Whether related to a divorce or not, knowing your rights is essential if you have been accused of any type of domestic violence.

Innocent Until Proven Guilty

The fact that all those who are accused of any crime are to be considered innocent until proven guilty is at the core of our legal system. Unfortunately, some police, prosecutors, and even judges forget this important concept and act as if the defendant is guilty before the case even begins. Whenever someone involved in the case acts this way, it is proper to demand a correction or at least put it on record that improper actions were taken. This can help to have your case dismissed, or prove your innocence, if handled properly.

Presentation of the Evidence

All evidence that is going to be used against you must be provided to you and your attorney before going to court. This will give you ample time to look at the evidence and craft an effective defense based on the facts surrounding the case. Examining all of the evidence and showing why it should not lead a judge or jury to a guilty verdict is essential is something only an experienced Alabama criminal law attorney should handle.

Proper Charges

There are many cases where there is an actual incident that takes place, but the level of domestic violence charges doesn’t fit. In Alabama, there are three levels of domestic violence ranging from serious, intentional violence against another party, down to potentially accidental injury being caused. Just because someone was hurt does not mean they are guilty of first degree domestic violence (or guilty at all). Demanding that the charges against you fit the situation is an important first step in many domestic violence cases.

Right to Legal Representation

Of course, you also have the right to an attorney. Domestic violence charges are extremely serious. You should never attempt to defend yourself on your own. Instead, contact our office to go over your rights and see how we can work together to fight the charges against you.

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Written by John M. Totten

John M. Totten

John's office is in Athens, Alabama, where he has helped thousands of people in North Alabama with everything from family law issues, to catastrophic injury and death cases, to criminal defense.