Can I be denied the right to file charges against a ex co-worker?

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Can I be denied the right to file charges against a ex co-worker?

I’m being charged with simple battery. I got into a fight with an ex co-worker. The state attorney is charging me with simple battery. I was actually defending myself from an attack from this ex co-worker. I tried to file charges against this co-worker but an officer said that he would not file the charges. Can I be denied the right to file charges against the ex co-worker in this situation?

Asked on December 6, 2016 under Criminal Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The state *can* decline to file charges--*you* don't file charges after all, but the government does. (That's why all criminal cases are "Statev vs. John Doe", or whatever the defendant's name is: it's the state that brings criminal charges.) You can certain contact a higher-level officer (a sergeant, a captain, etc.) or the prosecutor's office and see if someone else will "overrule" this officer file the charges, but ultimately, it is up to the police & prosecutor whether to bring charges, not you. 


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