FAQ About Domestic Violence Cases

My spouse called the police, but she wants the case against me to be dismissed. Won’t the prosecutor dismiss my case if she refuses to press charges?

The myth of a case being dismissed when the alleged victim “refuses to press charges” is one of the biggest misconceptions about criminal law. The fact is that once the police are called and an arrest is made, the case now belongs to the State of Colorado and the decisions about how to move forward are made by a prosecutor. While input from the alleged victim is considered, prosecutors do not dismiss domestic violence cases just because they are asked to do so by the named victim. In some situations, a request from the named victim to dismiss the case may be interpreted by the prosecutor as evidence of coercion or control of the victim by the defendant, which is believed to be one cornerstone of a DV relationship. Ironically, in these situations, a plea from an alleged victim for dismissal can have the exact opposite effect on the prosecutor.

 

Can I get this whole incident taken off my record when my case is over?

Depending on the outcome of your case, it might be possible to remove public access to your arrest record and court record when your case is over. Sealing your arrest record would protect you from having to disclose your domestic violence incident on employment, school, and housing applications, and to any member of a public agency that might inquire about your criminal record. Not all cases are eligible for records sealing under current Colorado law. Please visit our dedicated records sealing information page to learn more about your eligibility and the process for sealing your arrest and criminal record.

 

How much will attorney fees cost?

I structure my attorney fees around my best estimate of how many attorney hours will be spent to secure the best possible outcome of your case. Attorney fees vary because cases vary drastically in terms of their complexity and in terms of the goals of the client. In every case, I offer an initial free attorney consultation by telephone or in person and can generally give a fee estimate at the end of this consultation.

 

 
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