July 14, 2014
In Los Angeles County, officers are not required to make an arrest when summoned to a domestic violence call, but it is encouraged. The goal is to prevent further violence and to punish those who may be committing acts of violence against their spouse, significant other or child. Whether they have been called by the alleged victim or by concerned neighbors, it is the job of police officers to quickly assess the situation and act accordingly. It can prove challenging to determine if domestic violence actually occurred and it is common for individuals in Santa Clarita to face charges even when no actual crime has been committed.
If law enforcement officers are called to your location, they will evaluate if any physical injuries exist, if a weapon is present and if anyone is in danger. After interviewing you and others at your location, they will have to decide who was the primary aggressor and if actions need to be taken. It is possible that you will be arrested.
It is important to remember that an arrest is not the same thing as a conviction and you still have a number of rights. For example, you have the right to remain silent and you may request an attorney. If you have been arrested on suspicion of domestic violence in Santa Clarita:
- Remember that everything you say can be used against you.
- Do not make any statements regarding the specifics of the incident.
- Remain polite when dealing with police officers.
- Refrain from sudden movements that may seem like acts of violence.
- Cooperate when being handcuffed, searched and fingerprinted.
If you are not considered dangerous and are released on your own recognizance, the district attorney will have to decide whether or not a crime has occurred and if charges will be filed. If you are not eligible for release, you could be transferred to receptive housing or a detention facility.
It is important to exercise your right to remain silent and to speak with an experienced Santa Clarita domestic violence attorney. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you could face at least 30 days in jail and mandatory attendance in a 52-week domestic battery class. Furthermore, you will have a criminal record that could affect your employment opportunities and social standing. Please do not take any chances. Contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney who can begin building your defense.
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