Domestic violence allegations are taken seriously in the state of Florida, and a conviction could result in jail time or other penalties. For individuals who are facing criminal charges of domestic violence, there are some potential defenses that may be effective. The defendant may argue that he or she is the wrong person and that the person responsible for the violence is someone else. Mounting such a defense may include the presentation of evidence of the defendant’s whereabouts or a reliable alibi.
The defense might argue that the allegations are deliberately false. It is not uncommon in child custody or divorce cases for one party to manufacture a claim of domestic violence. In such cases, a defense attorney may look for inconsistencies in the accuser’s story, witness accounts or police reports. Defendants might also claim that they acted in self-defense or that they were defending other individuals — their children, for example.
In rare cases, the defense will claim that the accuser consented to the violence. If a person has consented voluntarily, then that compliance might be used as a defense for domestic violence charges in Florida. In most cases, though, the strongest defense strategy is to target areas where the prosecution lacks proof. It is the job of the prosecutor to meet the burden of proof.
People in Florida who are facing criminal charges of domestic violence might want to speak with an attorney. A lawyer who has experience handling criminal defense cases may help by examining the prosecutor’s evidence for weaknesses or working to negotiate a plea bargain before or during the trial. An attorney may develop a theory of the case that absolves the client of responsibility, conduct witness interviews and depositions or argue on the client’s behalf during official proceedings.