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White Collar Crime Law
Domestic Violence Crimes
Annapolis and Baltimore Family Violence Law Attorney
All criminal accusations involving your family and domestic relationships should be taken very seriously in Maryland, even if you you believe the charges are not founded . Any accusation of domestic assault or child abuse by a spouse or acquaintance will cause several government agencies to spring into action, among them the police. Any potential charge can have a devastating effect on your reputation, your employment and your life in general.
The answer is simple. You need to have an experienced attorney involved as early as possible. There are issues that could change the outcome of your case if not addressed immediately. Serious consequences such as protective orders and removal of your child from your home before you are even convicted of a crime.
Assault: 1st degree and 2nd degree. An assault can range from a soft touch to a serious blow. An injury does need to exist to a victim for the charge of assault to stick. Often these situation are “he said-she said” scenarios. It is extremely important to take immediate steps to protect yourself because often even though the victim may not want to prosecute, it is out of her hands at that stage.
- Domestic violence: Once made, charges of domestic violence can be difficult to recant and often require an aggressive defense. Our lawyers often represent people who need help getting their spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend out of jail after making a complaint of domestic violence.
- Ex parte protective orders: In Maryland, all a person needs to do to obtain a temporary protective order against you is convince a judge that he or she is in fear of imminent harm. These orders are called "ex parte" because the judge hears from only one side — the alleged victim.
- Child Discipline: A report from an overzealous teacher or neighbor or a vengeful ex-spouse can result in a visit from Maryland Child Protective Services to your home. If the case workers believe that allegations of abuse are credible, your children can be taken from your home.
Often, a spouse or other person will obtain a "protective order" and request a "summons" or "warrant" from a commissioner for a criminal assault charge simultaneously. Police who come to a domestic violence scene look for "indicia" to determine if an assault has occurred. At that point in time it is often out of the hands of the person who actually called the police! You cannot control the situation!.
The history of Domestic Violence with our Judicial System is long and intertwined with criminal law. These type of cases have been around for a long time The theory of how they are prosecuted really changed back in the early nineties as a result of the infamous O.J. Simpson case. Many counties across the country including many in Maryland created "Domestic Violence" prosecuting units in the States Attorney’s office. The State Attorneys assigned to these cases specialized in Domestic Violence prosecutions. They became extremely aggressive in requesting jail and other severe penalties such as:
- Long term supervised probation
- Counseling requirements with groups such as House of Ruth
- Anger management forced classes
- Fines & other requirements
There are also relatively new statutes such as "Protective Orders", "Peace Orders" enhancing domestic violence crimes. The Legislature is working on additional enhanced penalties for Domestic violence. A spouse may now only raise their "marital privilege" not to testify in a domestic case one time in a lifetime
My name is Jim Crawford. For the past 20 years, I have defended people in throughout Maryland who have been accused of child abuse, domestic violence and other domestic cases. I offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case.
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