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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 24520
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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Thank you! California, No, No

Customer Question

Thank you!
JA: In what state did this occur?
Customer: California
JA: Have you talked to a laywer yet?
Customer: No
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
The father of my children (not my husband) was accused of gross bodily injury on my step father and domestic violence against me. I was the only one subpoenaed. My daughters miss their father. How do I get him out now!!!!! Please don't respond the people verses him... I already know that. What is a good thing to say in court?
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Hi,

I'm Zoey and I'll be assisting you. I'm reviewing your question now. Are you online at this time?

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

How long has your husband been incarcerated on his case? Has he appeared yet before the judge and been arraigned? What are his bail conditions? Does he have counsel? What are you being subpoenaed for?

Please reply to all of these questions here on this question thread.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I'm being subpoenaed for what happened on the evening in question. My step father told the officers he was hit and I said I was hit also. That wasn't entirely the truth. What should I do? My phone number is(###) ###-####
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Phone calls are a premium service that cost an additional fee. I can send you the information for such a call if you want one. You can pay the fee and we can proceed from there. Or, for the price that you have already paid, we can proceed on this thread.

Let me know what you want.

I do need all of the questions answered and you have only answered some.

I do see that you are the complainant. Has your husband appeared yet before the judge and has bail been set? Does he have a lawyer?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I can't afford $60.00.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

That's fine. We can proceed here on this thread for the money you have already paid.

All you have to do is to reply to the remainder of my questions so that I can see exactly what point in the proceedings you are and what is going on.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Ok that sounds great
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Then please provide the answers I have asked for.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
he has been before the judge his bail has been set for 205,000. I do not have a lawyer however i'm looking to hire one before the trial on September 9th.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I am being subpoenaed as a witness.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Are you there?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Thank you.

I assume from what you have said in your earlier post that you are the complainant in the case. If that's so, unless your interests are very different from the District Attorney's and/or you fear that you will be arrested yourself if you testify, there is no need for you to have a lawyer. The DA is acting on your behalf and on behalf of all other people in the state of California.

Have you talked to the DA and told the DA that you want your husband home? If not, you ought to try to talk to him/her before the court date and make your feelings clear about the case. You are the main witness against your husband and without your cooperation, the DA can't win his case. So he will listen to what you have to say, though he does not have to abide by what you wish to do.

Have you talked to your husband's lawyer and told him you want him home and ask him what you can do to help him? He may not wish to talk to you and is not required to do s, but if he thinks you can help the case, he will do so. You might want to try that before talking to the DA.

Have you been served formally and correctly? That is were you personally served (not by phone or mail) by a person who was at least 18 and not a party to the action? If you do not wish to testify against your husband and you are not properly served, you do not have to go in and testify. You can't ignore a properly served subpoena, but if they can't serve you or haven't served you properly, you don't have to testify at that time.

It appears that you want to change your story from what you told the police. If that is so, that isn't necessarily a problem. At the time of a domestic violence incident, people are very agitated and they don't always see or report an incident clearly. Also the police can be very pushy and can put words in the complainant's mouth. If something like that is what happened, you shouldn't be in trouble for changing the facts from the police report, but you should let the prosecutor know.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
The day that this happened I started a new medication do you think I should mention this?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Are there specific side effects to the medication that you think may have compromised your ability to think clearly? If so, you ought to let the DA know, because if the other side knows that would be an unpleasant surprise that could harm the DA's case against your husband.

I know you're saying that you want your husband home and that you want to change your story somewhat. Are you also saying that you want to drop all of the charges altogether?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I do. The day this all happened, I saw my psychologist for the first time in a awhile. They had to adjust my meds because I was feeling to "Zombie like". Within a day it completely changed me. My memory is just not there and I'm on disability for stress and postpartum depression.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Thank you.

This case does not belong to you any more. It belongs to the DA. But you do have a good reason for your judgment and your memory to be clouded, and you need to talk to the DA about what you now believe really happened and ask him or her to lift the order and drop the case.

You need to go to the prosecutor's office and speak to the assistant who is assigned to prosecute the case against your husband. Tell him/her that you are not interested in proceeding further, and tell them why. Let the prosecutor know you want the case against your husband dismissed. If you are concerned that the prosecutor might take reprisals (they generally don't go after their complainants legally, but I understand your concern), then bring a lawyer with you.

In my experience, the DA is going to be most concerned about your safety. As a matter of national policy when it comes to domestic cases, the odds are close to 100% that the prosecutor will tell you that it's too late for you to drop and that once a domestic violence matter is filed with the court, it becomes the state's case and not yours any more. The state can choose to go forward with the case whether the original complainant cooperates or not.

He will also tell you that if you refuse to cooperate, he can subpoena you , bring you into court in handcuffs, if necessary, put you on the stand and require you to testify against your husband. These facts are all perfectly true.

Realistically speaking, however, unless there are other witnesses or medical evidence, prosecutors usually can't win their domestic violence case without the cooperation of their key witness -- who is in this case you. So if you stick to your guns and refuse to change your mind, and if you don't make yourself available to the prosecutor, most of them will eventually opt to cut their losses, once they are sure that nobody has forced you to drop the charges, and once they are sure that you are going to be safe.

To expedite the resolution of this case, you need to see to it that your husband is represented by counsel and talk to your husband's lawyer once he has one. You can let him or her know that you have been trying to drop charges but that the prosecutor won't let you and that you don't want to cooperate or go forward with the case. Ask for the lawyer's help with the prosecutor. His lawyer should be willing to talk to the prosecutor for you, as the lawyer and you want the same thing: for your husband's case to be dismissed.

Not always but usually, when the complainant and the defense lawyer join forces to double-team a prosecutor to convince him drop charges, something favorable to the defendant, even if it's not a direct dismissal, can be worked out. In part, this is often because the judge will get impatient and eventually get into the act and tell the prosecutor that he ought to resolve this and stop wasting the court's time with a case that is clearly going nowhere.

I am going to have to leave my home now to walk my dogs. I am on the east coast and the day has begun here. If you have further follow ups, that is fine. Just post them, and as soon as I am back I will reply to them. I just wanted you to understand the de

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Just checking in to see if you need more help or any clarification of my answer. If so, please reply here on this question thread.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Hey are you there?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 months ago.

Yes. I am here