Attleboro Domestic Assault and Battery Attorney
If you have been charged with a domestic assault and battery in the Attleboro District Court, it is important for you to know that the Attleboro District Attorneys will not dismiss the case even if the alleged victim does not want to testify against you. In most instances these cases will need to be scheduled for trial. The attorneys at DelSignore Law regularly appear in the Attleboro District Court and have extensive experience in assisting clients with domestic assault and battery charges. This page is intended to help you understand the process.WHERE WILL MY CASE BE HEARD?
If you’ve been charged with a domestic assault and battery in Mansfield, Norton, North Attleboro or Attleboro your case will be heard in the Attleboro District Court. The court is located at 88 North Main Street, Attleboro, Massachusetts.
On your first appearance, called the arraignment, your case will be heard in courtroom one, which is on the first floor of the courthouse just past security. On your arraignment, you will need to check in with probation prior to entering the courtroom. The Attleboro probation department is located to your left at the end of the hall after entering. Most of your court dates in a domestic assault and battery case will be heard in courtroom. Motion hearings and trials are heard upstairs in courtroom 2.WHAT ARE THE DEFENSES TO A DOMESTIC ASSAULT AND BATTERY?
The attorneys at DelSignore Law have been very successful in defending clients charged with domestic assault and battery. There are a number of defenses in these types of cases. The defenses will vary based on whether the alleged victim is going to testify. If the alleged victim is expected to testify an experienced domestic assault and battery attorney will examine the facts in your case to determine if any of the following defenses apply in your case:
- Self-defense. In a self-defense case, a defense attorney can obtain prior violent acts of the alleged victim to argue that the victim was the aggressor. In the case of Commonwealth v. Adjutant, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court allowed criminal defense attorneys to admit this evidence at trial to support a claim of self-defense.
- Fabrication by the victim. Many times, the victim of an assault and battery charge may have a motive to fabricate the charges in order to get back at the accused.
This sometimes occurs during divorce proceedings, custody disputes or break up of relationships. If the victim does wish to proceed with the case, you will need to prepare a defense showing the motivation of the victim to fabricate in order to contest her testimony at trial.
- Ulterior motivation to lie or try to use the criminal process for some improper purpose.
If the alleged victim does not wish to testify at trial the court will need to evaluate whether the District Attorney’s office will be allowed to compel or force them to testify. There are certain circumstances where an alleged victim has a constitutional right NOT to testify. These include:
- Marital Privilege- with limited exceptions, a spouse cannot be compelled to testify against another spouse.
- 5th amendment Privilege- if there is some indication that the alleged victim committed a crime that they may disclose during their testimony they may be able to invoke their 5th amendment right against self-incrimination and refuse to testify
In Attleboro these privileges are usually only allowed to be invoked on the trial date.
In cases where the alleged victim has a privilege and does not want to testify, the case will come down to other evidence in the case, including 911 calls or witness testimony. If the Commonwealth does not have these types of independent evidence, your attorney may be able to argue to the court that the charges should be dismissed on the trial date.HOW LONG DOES A DOMESTIC ASSAULT AND BATTERY TAKE TO RESOLVE IN THE ATTLEBORO DISTRICT COURT?
The time it takes to resolve a domestic assault and battery in Attleboro is dependent on your specific case. However, in most instances, the attorneys at DelSignore Law will be able to resolve your case in three to four months. If we have reason to believe the alleged victim does not want to proceed with the case we will try to schedule the case for trial as soon as possible, so you can get back to your life without the added stress of a criminal case.
If you have been charged with a domestic assault and battery in the Attleboro District Court it is important that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. You should not rely on the belief that the case will be dismissed because the alleged victim does not want to testify. The District Attorney’s office in Attleboro will not dismiss the case prior to trial just because the alleged victim states they don’t want to proceed with the case. The attorneys at DelSignore law have experience with the Attleboro District Court and have an office located next to the courthouse. Call 781-686-5924 anytime to discuss your case with one of our attorneys. We would be happy to help.