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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 24020
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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My boyfriend is in jail mascucious wounding charge first

Customer Question

My boyfriend is in jail for a mascucious wounding charge first charge ever. We were born intoxicated I do not remember anything they haven't aet bond I'm not pressing charges bit the state is. How much time do you tjunk he is looking at
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Hello,
My name is ***** ***** I am an experienced criminal lawyer.
What sort of injuries did you sustain? Do you wish your boyfriend to be prosecuted or are you hoping to drop the charges? Who contacted the police? Were there any witnesses besides you and your boyfriend?
Use the reply tab below to respond
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It was just me and him. I contacted the police but I don't remember any of lt. The back of my head was bleeding I'm thinking I may have fell. And I jave a black eye. I am not pressing charges and I want the charges to be dropped. I think he needs to go to aa meetings and have some counseling. He has held the same job for 5 years and I'm worried he will lose it. Everything happened around 3 Saturday morning and he has been in jail since he wasmt there when the cops came. Can they use my statement even tho I was intoxicated and I did not sign any paper work.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
And a facial fracture a detective came to the hospital even tho I didn't wanna talk to him and he took pictures of my face. I just don't get how he hasn't got bail. I don't remember why we were fighting but k think they took things over board
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the prompt reply.
The one thing you can do for your boyfriend is to make sure he's got a lawyer on this case. You don't need to contact your boyfriend in order to see to that. He's going to need one.
Although this is a first arrest, the charges are very, very serious. Malicious wounding in your state is a Class C felony, punishable by up to 20 years in prison. The reason there's no bail set on him yet is the very serious and violent nature of the charge. That is, the state is saying that your boyfriend deliberately intended to seriously injure you, and it's that intent, along with the injury that is holding him in jail right now.
These kinds of cases are frequently reduced by the prosecutor's office, depending upon what the medical reports and any other evidence shows. If, for example, there is no intent to seriously injure you, because your boyfriend was too drunk to form that intent, then the injuries were just unlawful rather than intentional, and that's the difference between a class 3 felony in your state and a class 6 felony. That's also the difference between a maximum possible penalty of 20 years and a maximum of 5 years with the possiblity of his only facing a misdemeanor sentence as well.
I am not a doctor nor have I heard any evidence from experts as to what precisely may have caused the injuries, but if you sustained fractures to your face and your skull, the charge is not out of line. That doesn't mean the prosecutor won't consider reducing it, particularly if your boyfriend and you were both drunk.
Yes, your statements at the time can all be used against your boyfriend, although if this case goes to trial you would get the opportunity to say that you and he were very drunk and that you do not actually remember what happened or what you said to the police. If a jury believes that this is possible, your boyfriend could not get convicted of the crime.
The more serious the injuries, the less likely the prosecutor will be to drop these charges. But you do need to get the name of the prosecutor assigned to try to convict your boyfriend and talk to him or her. Let him or her know that you were both very drunk, that you don't remember what he did or what you said at the time of the incident, but that you wish him to drop all charges.
He will tell you that he can go forward with or without you on the basis of the medical records, and that's accurate. But the prosecutor needs you to make his case as strong as it can be, so he's not going to alienate you completely. If the prosecutor tells you that he won't drop the charges, you will need to talk to your boyfriend's lawyer so that he knows that you're not interested in prosecuting. Tell him you want help to get these charges dropped. Frequently when the complainant on a domestic violence case (you) starts holing hands with the defense attorney, some kind of a favorable disposition can be worked out for the defendant.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So how do I find out who the prosecutor is?? And will it get me in trouble? I've been calling the court and no one has called me back yet. I talked to a bonds man today and they called the courts and said he had a hearing yesterday and got a court appointed lawyer. Would I get in Troubl if I get him a lawyer?? And also they said his lawyer hasn't asked for a bond. So what all can I do to help with out stepping out of boundaries ???
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
You are the complainant on the case. That makes you the state's chief witness against your boyfriend. The prosecutor will always be willing to talk to you. He's working on your behalf.
You find out who the prosecutor is by calling the prosecutor's office, not the court. Tell them you are the complainant in the case against [give your boyfriend's name] and you want the name and the extension number of the prosecutor assigned to prosecute that case. Once you get the name, go to see the prosecutor.
Remember, you are the state's witness. The prosecutor will need you to talk to him anyway. You can't get in trouble for reaching out to the prosecutor.
As for crossing the line, it would not be a good idea for you to talk directly to your boyfriend. You can't get in trouble, but HE CAN, even if you invite him talk to you by contacting him first. Once there's an order in force, parties can't forgive each other and forget about the court order.
Prosecutors do not like their witnesses to talk to defense lawyers, but there is nothing illegal or improper about doing so. Prosecutors don't like it because it gives the defense information they can use to make the prosecutor's case weaker. But you can hire your boyfriend a lawyer if you don't want him to use a public defender. And you can speak to that lawyer if you wish to do so. The prosecutor won't like it, but you can't get in trouble for it, since it is not a violation of any law.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How do I find the prosecutors office!? And how hard is it to find a defense attorney willing to take on this case and how much do you think it will be to hire him
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Call the court and ask the clerk for the phone number of the prosecutor's office that serves the court. He'll give it to you.
The charges here are very serious. Lawyers set their fees by figuring out how much it will cost to successfully resolve the case. A trial case on a malicious wounding can be very expensive because the stakes are high and the case will take a lot of time. A negotiated plea would cost less because it gets resolve sooner.
Call the Virginia Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service. Not only can they refer you to a lawyer but they can give you a ballpark estimate of services for your part of the country.
http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/lris/directory/main.cfm?id=VA
Meanwhile, a public defender is a full-fledged lawyer, and some of them are excellent lawyers. All of them are experienced in trying cases.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I got in touch with the prosecutor and told him I don't remember bardly anything from that night and he set an appointment for tommro what excay should I do and he also said there was two charges
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Do you know if lawyers do payment plans!!
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Criminal lawyers usually require payment up front Some will accept credit cards, which may be helpful.
I can't tell you what to say to the prosecutor except to tell him the truth about what you remember and let him know how you feel about the case. If you don't want to prosecute, let him know. It's the prosecutor's case, and he does not have to do what you want. But if you don't want him prosecuted, the prosecutor is the only one who can drop the charges. So you need to let him know how you feel.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also talked to my boyfriends lawyer ; he said to tell the prosecutor that I called him cause he was gonna mention it during my questioning in court. Is this bad or good!!!??
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also at the hospital they took a urine sample is it possible to use this yo prove I was intoxicated. And o believe I told the cop at the scene I was
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Yes, of course he's going to mention this in court. Because that's what he needs to do to try to get the charges dropped, which is what you say you want to do. So yes, you can tell the prosecutor that you want to drop and you have already told that to your boyfriend's lawyer.
Again, the prosecutor will not be happy about you talking to the defense lawyer. But there is nothing unlawful about you talking to the defense lawyer. So you cannot get in trouble for it.
Yes, if there was a sample taken at the hospital that could show you were intoxicated, that might be helpful. But what would be more helpful is a sample showing that your boyfriend was intoxicated, as he's the one being charged here.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Do you think they took some kind of sample when they took him to jajl?? Could his mom testify or my sister saying that when they saw us we were wasted?? Would that help at all??
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also I was so drunk I never called 911 I dialed 411 and is it possible I could have exaggerated it all
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
I don't know what they did when they took him to jail. His lawyer would find all of that out. Since they did not see the actual event, your mother and sister would probably not be of much help. But his lawyer would determine what, if any, witnesses would be useful to your boyfriend if the case goes to trial.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well I got a subpoena this morning for court August 24 do you think they will keep him there til than!! And if when I talk to the prosecutor if things change will we still have to go to court!? Or is it too late for the charges to change?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
Yes, I think that the DA will want to keep him in jail until his court date and probably for several years thereafter. You will have to make arrangements to talk to the DA and see if you can change his mind. If your boyfriend has not yet been indicted it is not too late for the charges to change.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Several years??! He has never committed a crime his whole life!!!! I mean never!!! Not a ticket nothing!
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
As I told you in the beginning, Malicious Wounding is a Class C felony which carries a maximum possible sentence of 20 years. Right now, and until you or your boyfriend's lawyer can successfully convince the prosecutor or a jury otherwise, the DA is treating this as the very serious charge that it is.
I've told you repeatedly now, that the person you need to talk to is the prosecutor. He holds all the cards and the key to this case, which is his and not yours. I suggest you do that as soon as possible so that he knows how strongly you feel about this and so that he may take your wishes into consideration when determining how to handle this case.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I go at 230 I'm just so nervous and scared. I've never had to deal with something this serious nor has he.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
I understand. You ought to be concerned. But in the prosecutor's mind you are the victim of a horrible crime, and I guarantee you that he is going to try to convince you that the only person you ought to be scared of is your boyfriend. It will be up to you to try to convince him that you aren't and that you don't think he should be prosecuted.
If you can't, you have to leave the defense work to your boyfriend's lawyer. If you think you have helpful witnesses or information, have them contact your boyfriend's lawyer as well.
Good luck this afternoon.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So he is out on bond and tonight the protective order ends but his mom said that his probation orders no contact but the prosecutor hasn't told me that. So do you think it was just til the order was over or til coutt?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
If probation orders no contact, he will have to keep away from you or he can be violated on probation. This is so whether the order ended or not.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But wouldn't the prosecutor or someone let me know?? Cause the order is over but I haven't heard anything
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
The prosecutor is dealing with the new case. Probation is dealing with the old case and imposes what rules it feels appropriate.
You can call the DA on the case and ask her to find out about probation, but it makes complete sense to me that probation would want him to keep away from you, because you were the complainant in a new case against him.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But they know I did not want to press charges. Is there anything I can do??
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.
You can try talking to his probation officer. Apart from that, there is nothing you can do. His lawyer can come before the judge to try to get the court to overturn probation's ruling. The judge has that power and he will exercise it if he feels that what probation wants creates an injustice.
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