What is the best way to handle a domestic violence charge?

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What is the best way to handle a domestic violence charge?

My husband and I were drinking heavily and got into an argument. I slapped him and he called the cops. I was held in jail until he posted my bail, even though he was the victim. The state is charging me with Simple Battery for family violence. My husband wants nothing to happen, it was a heated debate, but I realize I broke the law. First offenders act? Should I attempt to contact the prosecutor before my trial date and get this settled? Will they listen to me? Or should I plead not guilty and let my husband take the stand? Should I get a criminal law attorney? In Columbus, GA.

Asked on February 14, 2011 under Criminal Law, Georgia

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, of course you should get an attorney.  Were you not offered one when you were arraigned?  Even though your husband is the complaining witness and is hesitant about testifying against you, the State has an obligation to prosecute.  But your attorney could possibly plea bargain it down to a lesser offense or maybe have the charge conditionally dismissed by agreeing to have you do some program that the court would look at as an attempt to make things right - an alcohol abuse program and possibly a domestic violence program - and to enter it voluntarily before your court date.  Look good to the Judge.  Get legal help.  Good luck.


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