Norwalk - Your Domestic Violence Arrest
In the City of Norwalk CT, the most common criminal offense is domestic violence. Disorderly conduct is the most commonly charged domestic violence offense in Norwalk. Many people who are arrested for a domestic violence crime have never been arrested before in their life. Being arrested and facing the criminal justice process can be an overwhelming and stressful experience for anyone. If you combine this ordeal with the familial upheaval and separation from your loved ones that come along with criminal orders of protection, it really can be a complete nightmare. Regrettably, the state's bureaucracy seemly takes weeks to distinguish between a seemingly harmless verbal disagreement between a married couple on the one hand and a severe case of ongoing domestic violence with a pattern of physical abuse on the other. Often becoming involved in the system can be the start of a long and challenging process to clear your name and extricate yourself from the court's domestic violence bureaucracy. If you are facing this ordeal, having the advice and counsel of a Norwalk domestic violence defense lawyer can make the process not only less stressful for you but in many cases, you can get a better resolution of your case.Domestic Violence Arrests
Once the police get involved with an investigation of a domestic violence incident, they are required by law to make an arrest if they find probable cause that any crime has occurred. This is in direct contrast to non-domestic violence crimes where the police are afforded some degree of latitude and can exercise discretion not to make an arrest, particularly when the victims do not want to "press charges" or make statements. Most domestic violence arrests are the result of a 911 call. By the very nature of the crime of domestic violence, it involves family members, and often these crimes occur within the sanctity of the home. Once a 911 call is made, and police respond upon the scene of a domestic violence crime, a process has been set in motion that takes a life of its own. At that point, the police will begin their investigation to determine if they find probable cause that a crime has occurred. For this reason, it is always important to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions without the advice of a Norwalk domestic violence defense attorney.
It is essential to realize that in domestic violence investigations, it is irrelevant what the victim's position is on whether or not they want to "press charges" or cooperate with the investigation. Statistically, studies have shown that many victims of domestic violence will not cooperate with the police and will not seek to have their abuser arrested. When the police begin their investigation, they are looking for evidence of a physical attack that can take the form of marks, scratches or bruises, broken plates, doors, and the like. Also, the police will interview any witnesses to the crimes that may have overheard the dispute and the parties themselves. Remember, if you are under investigation for any crime, including a domestic violence matter, you have the Constitutional right to remain silent. Do not answer any questions without a lawyer present. Before you answer any questions, contact an experienced Norwalk criminal defense attorney to give you guidance and advice on how to respond.Mandatory Arrest Law
The best Norwalk criminal defense lawyers would agree that under Connecticut law, if the police find probable cause that a domestic violence crime has occurred, then they are required by law to make an arrest. Our legislature has enacted a so-called "mandatory arrest law," which requires the police to make an arrest in every instance where probable cause is found that a domestic violence crime has occurred. If the victim tells the police that they changed their mind and wants to "drop" the charges, it will not stop the arrest from happening. The only factor which determines whether or not an arrest will be made is whether the police find probable cause that a crime has occurred.
Alarmingly the rate of dual arrests in Connecticut is ten times the national average. In 30% of domestic violence arrests statewide, the police are making dual arrests in domestic violence cases. They leave it for the Court system to sort out who is right and who is wrong and who will be punished. If you are caught up in the domestic violence court process, it is time to contact a Norwalk domestic violence attorney to schedule a free consultation to go over the facts of your case and get some solid legal advice.On-Site Arrests vs. Warrant Arrests
There are two routes in which the police can make an arrest. The first occurs when the crime occurs within the direct observation of the police officer or is based upon what is known as the "speedy information" received by the police during the course or promptly after the commission of the crime and is of such nature that the police officer can reasonably rely upon it as true. In these situations, the police can make a so-called "on-site" arrest. Generally, "on-site" arrests must take place within a reasonable period from the criminal act for the arrest to fall within the "speedy information" doctrine. Often the police will contact the perpetrators of domestic violence crimes who have fled the scene by cell phone to ask them to return to "give their side of the story" or some other guise because they need to arrest them quickly. If the police have contacted you, your first call should be to a Norwalk domestic violence attorney to seek legal guidance before speaking with the police. If too much time passes, the police are forced to use the second method of requesting an arrest - applying for an arrest warrant.
In every instance in which probable cause has been found for the commission of a domestic violence crime or the violation of an order or protection, the police must type up an arrest warrant application and submit it to the state's attorney for approval. After that, if the state's attorney finds that probable cause exists the warrant will be signed by the state's attorney and sent to a judge of the Superior Court who will review the warrant to determine if there is probable cause for the arrest and then often the judge will set the bond amount and any conditions of your release. In many cases, when a warrant has issued for your arrest, the police will contact you and provide you with an opportunity to "turn yourself in." Generally, this is an excellent time to contact a domestic violence defense lawyer serving Norwalk, who can help you arrange a bail bond's man and assist you with the process of turning yourself in.Custodial Arrest vs. Non-Custodial Arrests
When the police make an arrest "on-site" they have several options on how to proceed. The first is a non-custodial arrest. In this case, the police officer can issue you a misdemeanor summons form requiring that you attend a court appearance the next morning. Many people get confused when they receive a "summons" because it looks and feels a lot like a speeding ticket, and they often think that they were never arrested. A non-custodial arrest is a misdemeanor arrest, and you will receive a permanent criminal record for a misdemeanor arrest. As with any domestic violence arrest, you will be required to attend court the next business morning for a domestic violence arraignment.
The second option, which is used in many domestic violence matters, is the so-called "custodial arrest." This type of arrest means that the police put handcuffs on you, place you in a police car, take you down to the police station, and put you through the booking process for your charges. The police will fingerprint you, take your photograph, make notes of all your necessary demographic information which gets forwarded to the FBI.
If were arrested on a warrant, all arrests are custodial arrests. Whether you turn yourself into the police station or if they apprehend you and take you into custody on an arrest warrant, they will process you on a custodial arrest.The Temporary Order of Protection Upon Arrest
Upon a police arrest for a domestic violence case, they are authorized to issue a temporary order of protection that will take effect immediately and remain in effect until your arraignment in court on the next business day. It is imperative to realize that although the issuance of this document is very informal if you violate the terms of the temporary order of protection, you can be charged with an additional criminal offense. It is important to abide by the terms of the temporary order of protection. If you violate the order, it will not only expose you to additional criminal charges, but in addition, it is going to result in more severe and restrictive terms of release and orders of condition when you reach court for your arraignment.Mandatory Next Day Arraignment
Every domestic violence arrest requires that the defendant be presented before the Superior Court for a mandatory appearance on the next day that court is open. It is recommended that you retain the services of a Norwalk domestic violence defense lawyer to provide legal representation at your arraignment.Why Hire Allan F. Friedman Criminal Lawyer?
- Domestic violence arrests don't happen during business hours, so we are available 24/7
- Over 25 years of experience in defense of domestic violence accusations
- We will provide personalized attention and get you results
- Free initial consultation
- Reasonable rates and payment plans available
In 28 years of practice, we have seen a lot of good people who have never been in trouble with the law before who made a poor decision wind up being charged for a domestic violence arrest. We understand that everyone makes mistakes.
If you have been charged with a domestic violence crime such as disorderly conduct or assault, you should promptly contact a Norwalk domestic violence lawyer to go over the options to defend the allegations. Attorney Allan F. Friedman will give you sound legal advice. Our objective is to use every means legally permissible to have the charges dismissed or thrown out, or significantly reduce the charges. We work on a reasonable flat-fee basis. Call Attorney Friedman at (203) 847-2000 to schedule your free initial consultation and case evaluation - we are available 24/7 - 365 days a year. Or you can contact us online for a prompt response.Additional Norwalk DUI Resources
Our modern Norwalk office is conveniently located near Exit 13 off I-95