If I am charged with a domestic violence and assault and battery, but the alleged victims don’t want to pursue the charges, what should I do?

Asked on June 23, 2014 under Criminal Law, Michigan


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

At this point, you need to consult with an attorney as to all of this. The fact is that it is up to the state and not the victimr as to dropping the charges in a criminal case. In fact, in DV cases especially, the state may be reluctant to do so whether or not the victim wishes to testify and/or otherwise particiapte in the prosecution's case. The reason is that many vitoms of DV are coerced by the perpetrator into not coopertating with the authorites. That having been said, an attorney experienced in these kinds of cases may be able to use the fact that the victim doesn't want to cooperate to your advantage.

Maury Beaulier / MinnesotaLawyers.com

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You should retain counsel to defend against the charge.  A victim and/or a witness can be subpoenaed to tedstify  at trial even if they do not wish to do so.  The state is under no obligation to dismiss charges simply because the victim does not wish to pursue them.  In fact, that is a common occurrence. 

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