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    Steps to Follow When You Face a False Domestic Violence Claim

    A domestic violence conviction is a blight on anybody’s reputation. It tells others that the convicted person doesn’t respect boundaries or is an abuser who’s willing to get violent to achieve what they want in a relationship. And while you can argue that those who get convicted of domestic violence deserve to be tarred with that particular brush, there’s an issue that often goes unreported:

    False domestic violence claims.

    Knowing the impact that a conviction can have on somebody’s life, some people use domestic violence claims as bargaining chips in legal disputes. They gain leverage, thus getting an advantage, based on falsehoods that you have to disprove. With these steps, you prepare to demonstrate that the claims are unfounded.

    Step 1 – Understand Why Domestic Violence Claims Are So Effective

    A successful domestic violence claim against you creates a taboo that many other crimes don’t have. The implication is that you’ve exerted your power not only over somebody innocent, but somebody who you’re supposed to love. You’ve broken a bond of trust in the worst way possible.

    And when measured against the stats, this taboo becomes even more apparent. Reports from 2023 show that domestic violence cases that result in death are on the rise, with the Colorado Domestic Violence Fatality Review Board stating that 91 domestic violence-related deaths occurred in the state in 2022. That’s the highest number since the board’s 2016 founding, and it’s another ingredient in the recipe that makes claims of domestic violence so effective.

    Understanding why the accuser is using a false domestic violence claim is your first step. It works in the sense that it casts immediate aspersions on your character, placing you on the back foot in a legal dispute.

    Step 2 – Get Legal Help Immediately

    There are many reasons why a person may falsely accuse you of domestic abuse.

    Take custody battles as an example. If your former partner successfully paints you as an abuser, they get an instant advantage because they position you as a potential danger to both them and your children. It’s often a leverage game. And it’s one that affects more people than you may realize.

    The results of a 2011 survey of 100,000 people found that about 11% of them (11,000) say they’ve faced false abuse allegations. More recent stats correlate, with a 2023 press release published by the Coalition to End Domestic Violence stating that one in 10 accusations are false.

    A sense of rightful indignation may prompt you to immediately start arguing against false claims as soon as they’re made again you. That’s a mistake. Once you understand the severity of the claim and why it’s happening, seek legal guidance from a defense attorney who understands Colorado law. The important thing to recognize here is that it doesn’t matter if you know that you’re innocent. What matters is that you can successfully demonstrate your innocence within the context of a legal battle, which requires an understanding of domestic violence law.

    Step 3 – Create Your Defense Plan

    Your defense will usually follow one of two avenues:

    • You didn’t do it, you’ll argue that you didn’t do it, and, in some cases, you’ll try to prove that the accuser is actively lying to disparage your reputation.
    • You did commit an act of violence, though it was either in self-defense or it was an accident and you didn’t mean it to happen.

    The latter of these approaches accounts for incidents where violence occurred, but there was a justification for that violence. It’s a viable defense approach in Colorado. The law allows you to commit certain acts of violence assuming you’re defending yourself, your home, or another person. The key word there is “defending,” and you’ll have to prove that you only took action because you were forced to protect yourself.

    A claim that you didn’t do it isn’t necessarily easier to prove, as your defense can often come down to placing your word against that of the accuser. In these cases, a competent attorney will gather every shred of evidence they can find to show that you didn’t commit the crime. This includes finding physical witnesses to testify on your behalf and searching for physical evidence (or the lack thereof) to show that the prosecution doesn’t have a case.

    Either way – you need a plan. Simply saying you didn’t do something isn’t enough to demonstrate, beyond a reasonable doubt, that you didn’t commit the crime.

    Defend Yourself from False Domestic Violence Allegations

    It’s sad that false domestic violence accusations happen, particularly because the many real cases of violence that occur in Colorado are so damaging to those that experience them. But as the statistics show, a false claim against you is a possibility (it happens to about 10% of people), and those claims are often made to gain leverage.

    Knowing why somebody would falsely accuse you of domestic violence is the first step to understanding the effectiveness of this underhanded technique. But from there, you can’t fight the claim alone. Legal help is a must to ensure the specific laws you’re accused of breaking and to ensure you build a case against the claim.

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