Domestic Violence Lawyer Rockville, MD
A domestic violence accusation can make you feel like you have no friends left – but a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD, can help. Domestic violence charges in Maryland are serious and should be fought tooth and nail to save your future and preserve your reputation. Domestic violence is a horrible experience, and it leaves a permanent mark on the lives of everyone involved, whether they’re victims or perpetrators. While violence and abuse have the potential to destroy lives, a wrongful accusation of domestic abuse has the potential to destroy your future and ruin your relationships.
Having domestic violence charges on your criminal record can seriously affect how you live the rest of your life. As soon as you are accused of domestic violence, you can expect a serious upheaval of your social circle – whether or not there was any truth to the accusation. Your friends and even your family may turn their backs on you, despite however long you have known them. You may be isolated and ostracized by everyone you know, and your professional life may suffer. Having domestic violence on your record can make your search for employment much more difficult, and it may even affect your ability to find a new home.
The possible punishments for domestic violence charges depend on the severity of the alleged abuse. If domestic violence is connected with assault, it can result in up to ten years in jail. If you are convicted of assault in the first degree, you may be facing up to 25 years in jail instead. You’ll carry the social stigma of domestic abuse with you for as long as you live, but a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD, can help you find a way out.
Four Ways to Recognize Domestic Abuse
Are you seeing less of a cherished friend lately? Taking a backseat to romantic relationships is not a new or unique situation. Maybe you’ve grown apart, and your friendship has run its course. It’s hurtful, but it happens. However, a dramatic shift in behavior could also be a sign of abuse. Signs of domestic violence are subtle but easily identifiable if you look closely. Don’t look the other way. Violence against women wrecks families and puts lives at risk. Your friend may benefit from the counsel of a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD. Look for these four warning signs if you suspect abuse.
Your Friend is Controlled
Abusers will often control their victims both emotionally and physically. Perhaps your friend’s partner makes rude comments about her clothes. He may demand that she change her outfit. He often makes accusations, suspecting affairs and other such atrocities. Enjoying a night out has also become cumbersome. Suddenly, she requires permission for simple things like going out to dinner. She receives constant calls and texts that are not only annoying but obsessive. Money is always an issue as abusers often control spending. She’ll likely brush all of this off and deny the need for a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD. These are all classic signs of controlling behavior.
Your Friend is Reclusive
You once had a constant sidekick who was the life of the party. Dancing the night away without a care in the world was a typical affair. But now, you rarely see each other. Her RSVP to any event is always “no,” along with a flimsy excuse. It’s true that people evolve and sometimes enjoy parties less as they age. But consistently avoiding loved ones altogether is a major red flag.
Your Friend is Different
Someone who was once bubbly and outgoing is now timid and nervous. Your friend seems jumpy, depressed, and often bursts into tears if you mention a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD. You used to be confidants, but now she rarely shares anything with you. Abuse victims will seldom discuss their private situations. Violence against women destroys lives, and Daniel J. Wright is committed to aiding victims.
Your Friend is Often Injured
Bruises and injuries are the most obvious signs of abuse. Frequently, victims will try to hide their injuries from the world. Wearing sweats in the middle of a heatwave may be an attempt to cover bruises on arms and legs. She claims not to require a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD and has poor excuses for visible injuries. “I’m such a clutz. I fell down the stairs”, explains away a broken arm. A few weeks later, “walking into a door” results in a black eye. Don’t ignore physical injuries. These are signs the abuse has progressed and is getting more severe. Sometimes a protective order may be appropriate, and Daniel J. Wright can help.
If you suspect abuse, act now. Domestic violence can quickly turn deadly. Contact a crisis helpline for support. Your compassion and concern may save a life.
False Accusations of Domestic Violence
There are real domestic violence victims who suffer horrific physical and emotional abuse at the hands of their perpetrators. Unfortunately, there are also people who claim they are victims and falsely accuse someone in their life as the person who abused them. This can be done for a number of reasons. Maybe they are angry over the relationship ending and this is their way of getting revenge on the person they are falsely accusing. Another common reason for these types of false accusations is the couple is involved in a divorce and/or child custody case. Whatever the reason, if you have been falsely accused, a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD recommends the following steps.
Do Not Speak to the Person Who Has Accused You
Your natural reaction may be to reach out to the person who has made this terrible accusation against you, but that move could result in you sitting in jail until your trial. In most domestic violence cases, the court issues an order of protection forbidding the accused from having any contact – including third party contact – with the alleged victim. Violations of an order of protection result in harsh penalties from the court. Attempted contact with the victim can also be used against you by the prosecutor.
Collect as Much Evidence as You Can
There is usually very little evidence available to the prosecutor in false domestic abuse accusation cases since the abuse never actually occurred. A Rockville, MD domestic violence lawyer will need as much evidence as you can put together to defend you. Gather up all communication – including voicemails, text messages, emails, social media posts, and comments – which can help refute the allegations the accuser is making against you. Other types of evidence that your lawyer may be able to use are medical records and any history of substance abuse the accuser may have.
Talk to Witnesses
Since there is usually little to no evidence in these cases, witness testimony is often crucial to proving an accused’s innocence. Your domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD may be able to use testimony from family, friends, and others who can testify that they never saw any signs of abuse or violence. If the accuser has made false allegations against others in the past, or the witness knows why they are making false allegations now, their testimony can help show you are not guilty of what you are being accused of. Just be aware that anyone you are approaching is not close to the accuser and you speaking with them could be construed as a violation of any protective order when it comes to third-party contact.
Gender and Domestic Violence
Society sees domestic violence as a problem of “battered women,” but men can be victims of domestic violence too. When this happens, it’s much less likely to be reported; in fact, both the perpetrators of domestic violence against men and the male victims often don’t see it as a crime. However, a domestic violence lawyer in Rockville, MD understands that men can be victims of domestic violence and also how this affects the male victims.
Partner Abuse and the Association of Domestic Violence Intervention Providers report that 23% of women and 19.3% of men report that they have been assaulted by a domestic partner at least once in their lives. 28.3% of women and 21.6% of men have participated in behavior that can be classified as domestic violence. 57.9% of domestic violence is bi-directional, 28.3% is female-on-male, and 13.8% is male-to-female. In addition, 41% of women and 43% of men have engaged in emotional abuse that was intended to control and/or threaten their partners. 40% of women and 32% of men have engaged in emotional abuse as a response to being provoked.
This is not limited to Maryland and elsewhere in the United States. Studies spanning Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and the Caribbean show that rates of female-on-male violence are the same as or higher than male-on-female violence in 73 out of 117 studies. Rates of female-on-male psychological abuse, such as control and dominance, are higher than male-on-female psychological abuse in 36 out of 54 studies.
Demographic risk factors for domestic violence include youth, low income, unemployment or underemployment, minority group membership, childhood exposure to abuse, depression, alcohol and drug abuse, and high-conflict relationships.
Many male victims of domestic abuse do not consider themselves victims. They may have been conditioned to accept abuse from their female partners. They may feel that it is “unmanly” to be hurt by their female partners’ abuse. They may be reluctant to acknowledge that they are victims of domestic violence. Even men who do realize that they are victims often choose not to involve law enforcement out of fear that they won’t be believed or that they will be arrested as well. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Daniel J. Wright are quite aware that domestic violence against men is significantly under-reported and underrepresented.
It is also very well known that victims of physical abuse exhibit more psychological symptoms and lower cognitive functioning as compared to people who have not been victimized. Victims of psychological abuse often suffer depression, suicidal ideation, anxiety, fear, and stress. This can factor into poor impulse control and decision-making skills.
Getting in Touch with a Domestic Violence Lawyer
If you’ve been accused of domestic violence, it may be difficult to find anyone who is willing to support you. The sad reality is that many people are prejudiced and unwilling to listen to your side of the story – but you can count on a domestic violence lawyer in your darkest hours. Domestic violence accusations can be leveled against a person as a way of attacking them through the court and may be used to tear you away from your possessions, your children, and anything else you value. Fortunately, domestic violence lawyers can help you fight your charges and get your life back.
At the Law Offices of Daniel J. Wright, we understand that this may be one of the most difficult times in your life. At a time when nobody is willing to listen, we are ready to help you fight your charges. We offer personalized case management, and investigate every aspect of your case to determine how best you can defend yourself against domestic violence charges. We are committed to every client that contacts us about their domestic violence accusations, and we know that the legal process can be complicated and frustrating. We’re ready to guide you through every step of the way.