Domestic violence charges are some of the most common criminal charges in Nevada. However, they’re also charges that often have viable defenses. Domestic violence charges can hinge on biased witnesses and shaky evidence.

If you’re facing domestic violence charges, there are things that you can do to have the charges dropped. However, it’s up to you to prepare your defenses and aggressively fight the charges. Here’s what to know about getting domestic violence charges dropped from our experienced Las Vegas domestic violence lawyers.

What is Nevada’s Domestic Violence Law?

NRS 200.485 makes domestic violence illegal. [1] The law defines domestic battery as any intentional, offensive touching of a qualifying person. If you are accused of domestic battery, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you intentionally and offensively touched the victim, who must be a qualifying party. If you are charged with domestic violence, you will want to further explore Nevada’s domestic violence and battery laws to ensure you fully understand the charges you’re facing.

How to Get Domestic Violence Charges Dropped in Nevada

To get domestic violence charges dropped in Nevada, work with your defense attorney to point out to the state’s attorney where their case may be weak. The state may rethink the charges if you can point out how the evidence is inconsistent with the charges, how the victim may not be credible, or that you acted in self-defense. It’s important to tactfully approach these conversations with the state’s attorney because you also don’t want to reveal your trial strategy.

How to Beat a Domestic Violence Charge

There are several strategies when it comes to beating a domestic violence charge. You can take your case to trial, vigorously present your defense, and argue your case to the jury. On the other hand, you can present your defenses to the state’s attorney and ask them to reconsider pursuing the charges against you. The best course of action is highly specific to the charges against you. Regardless of what course of action you pursue for your defense, you’re going to need a strong defense to the domestic violence charges.

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Defenses to Get Domestic Violence Charges Dismissed

Here are some defenses that you might pursue to get your domestic violence charges dismissed:

  • Self-defense – When someone uses force against you, you have the legal right to use reasonable force to defend yourself. Too often, when someone acts in self-defense, they end up charged with domestic violence. However, injuries and witness testimony can tell the real story. Self-defense is a viable defense to get your domestic violence charges dismissed.
  • Accident – Domestic violence can happen by accident. In the chaos of an argument, accidents can happen. That doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is guilty of domestic violence. If you’re charged with domestic violence, accident can be a valid defense to the charges.
  • False accusations – Unfortunately, it’s a sad reality that sometimes people falsely accuse others of domestic violence. The false accuser may be trying to gain ground to win a child custody dispute, for example. They may just be trying to be in control and have the upper hand in the relationship. As you defend yourself against the domestic violence charges, you’re able to impeach the credibility of the witness. Pointing out bias can lead to a dismissal of the domestic violence charges against you.
  • Victim is not credible – There are various reasons that an accuser may not be credible. For example, mental illness or misunderstanding can lead to inaccurate reports and testimony. One way to get your domestic violence charges dropped is to present evidence that the victim is not credible.
  • Inconsistent statements – The person who accuses you of domestic violence is going to tell their story multiple times. They might talk to an officer, and they might also write a statement. When they testify in court, they tell their story again. Pointing out ways that the story changes can help bring the charges against you into question.
  • Victim refusal to testify – To win a conviction for a domestic violence charge, the state must have evidence. If the victim refuses to cooperate, the state may not have the evidence they need to win the case. Let’s be clear – you may not encourage or threaten a witness not to cooperate or testify. However, victim refusal to testify can be a reason that domestic violence charges get dropped.
  • Disputed testimony – Domestic violence charges often involve two parties – the defendant and the victim. Often, it comes down to one person’s word over the others. One way to get domestic violence charges dropped is to point out that it’s a he-said-she-said situation, and it’s impossible to entirely know the truth about what happened.

Can a Victim Drop Domestic Violence Charges?

No, a victim cannot drop domestic violence charges. The state prosecuting attorney has the final say of whether to drop the charges. However, the victim can give input to the state district attorney or prosecutor to make their wishes known. In the end, a victim cannot drop domestic violence charges. However, they can express to the state attorney that they do not wish for the state to proceed with prosecution of the case.

Domestic Violence Charge Dismissed With Prejudice

A domestic violence charge may be dismissed with or without prejudice. If the domestic violence charge is dismissed with prejudice, that means that the state can never bring the charges again. On the other hand, if the charges are dismissed without prejudice, there’s the possibility that the state can refile and start over with the charges. In most cases, domestic violence charges are dismissed without prejudice. It’s important to understand the difference so that you know whether you may face the same charges again in the future.

Domestic Violence Charges Dropped Still on Record

Domestic violence charges dropped, but still on record can be a significant problem. If domestic violence charges are dismissed, there’s a chance that the fact that the charges ever happened can still appear on your criminal record. When the domestic violence charges get dropped, you may be able to move for an expungement of the record immediately. Although it might seem unfair, it’s up to you to take steps to have the charges removed from your record so that they don’t appear in a criminal record search.

Las Vegas Attorneys for Domestic Violence

Do you want to get your domestic violence charges dropped? It’s not enough just to sit back and hope for the best. You need to prepare and present an aggressive defense to work towards a fair resolution of the charges. Take charge of your case. Contact our Las Vegas attorneys for domestic violence charges to talk about your defenses. We’ll work hard to fight the charges against you and defend your rights. Call us today.

Sources

[1] NRS 200.485

About the Author

Mark Coburn, Esq.

Mark Coburn is a dedicated and experienced defense attorney serving the Southern Nevada area. His passion for the law and commitment to his clients has made him one of the most prominent defense attorneys in Nevada. If you’re in need of a defense attorney, contact Mark Coburn for a free consultation on your case.