What happens if you change a story that you previously gave to the police?

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What happens if you change a story that you previously gave to the police?

Last month my daughters mother and I got into an altercation. She hit me, I hit her back, then I called the police. The police arrested me. While downtown I wrote out a statement about what happened. Yesterday I received a letter from the commonweatlh attorney saying that she recanted her verbal statement and that nothing happened. She said that our daughter scratched her. Is it possible that I can get my written statement amended? The C/A told her if I change my story to hers saying that nothing happened that he will get me for perjury because of the statement I wrote.

Asked on February 26, 2011 under Criminal Law, Virginia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, I believe that he is correct, if the statement was made under oath or in any way permitted by law in a form allowed to be substantiated as an oath, such as an affidavit.  You have a signed written statement.   If it is considered testimony and you recant your testimony then you can be charged with perjury, unless the statement can in some way be set aside as improperly obtained. If it does not count as "under oath" then it may not be perjurous.  She, also, can be charged here with giving fase information to the police, which is also a crime.  Telling them that you hit her (true or not) and then taking it back, so to speak, after it resulted in an arrest is also a crime.  Then when she testifies on the stand or under oath she could be held to have perjured herself.  ASk more questions of your attorney or get another. 


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