How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Zoey_ JD Your Own Question
Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27757
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
18321761
Type Your Criminal Law Question Here...
Zoey_ JD is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My boyfriend got locked up Sunday for aggravated battery and

Customer Question

My boyfriend got locked up Sunday for aggravated battery and battery
JA: Have charges been filed? If so, when is the next court date?
Customer: I didn't put a restraining order on him nor did I go to the hospital North want to press charges what can I do
JA: In what state did this occur?
Customer: Florida
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: His court date is Aug 11 8:30
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 months ago.

Hi,

I'm Zoey.

I've reviewed your post. Please be patient as I may need to research for you, and it also takes time to compose and type a reply.

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 months ago.

Once the state is involved in a criminal matter, the case does not belong to to the victim anymore. It belongs to the state of Florida, which is going forward with the matter on behalf of you and all the people of the state. So before the August 11 date, you need to contact the prosecutor who is handling the case against your boyfriend and let him or her know how you feel about the case and that you don't want to go forward.

You are the alleged victim in this case, and without your cooperation and if there are no other witnesses, the state won't be able to meet its burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecutor will willing to talk to you, because they will always talk to their complainants.

You should try talking to the prosecutor in person, rather than over the phone so that the prosecutor can see your sincerity and ask you any follow-ups he thinks are necessary.

That said, in my experience, as a matter of office policy with DV cases, the prosecutor will probably tell you that the state can choose to go forward with this case whether you cooperate or not. He may tell you that if you refuse to cooperate and testify against your boyfriend, he can subpoena you , bring you into court in handcuffs, if necessary, put you on the stand and require you to testify. He can tell you that if you change your story, he can charge you with perjury. These facts are all perfectly true. He has the power to do all that.

However, as I mentioned earlier in this answer, you are the state's key witness. The prosecutor needs you. So if you stick to your guns and tell the prosecutor that you want the charges dropped, most prosecutors will eventually opt to cut their losses, once they are sure that nobody is forcing you to drop the charges, and once they are sure that you are going to be safe. Most prosecutors do not like to spend time, energy and money going to trial with a reluctant complainant and a case they may, therefore, lose.

So if he won't agree to drop the charges, at that point you need to get a hold of your boyfriend 's lawyer and let him know you've been trying to get the prosecutor to drop the charges but that he will not do it and ask him how you can help him to get the case dismissed.

In my experience, 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 almost always be worked out. .

So, in short, the prosecutor is the only one who can drop this case, but the process starts with you letting him or her know that they don't want to go forward.

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 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.