- Sean C. O’Halloran
- Aiken and O’Halloran
- Ft Myers Criminal Defense Call: 239-334-8890
We often get calls from women whose husbands or boyfriends have been arrested for domestic battery in Lee County. Most of the time it is because of an argument that got out of hand, and most of the time it involves alcohol. Years ago, if you called 911, the police would show up and talk to the people involved and calm things down. Now, if you call 911, someone is going to jail. It is true that there are cases of actual domestic violence and abuse in Ft Myers and there are situations where the women have been subjected to acts of violence, but in my experience as a Ft Myers criminal lawyer, I have found that most of the arrests do not involve serious abuse. Many times it is just yelling and screaming, and many times it is because both parties have been drinking.
When the police get a 911 call, they will generally show up within minutes. They will generally interview the caller first, and often form an opinion before even talking to the man. “Battery” can be something as simple as poking someone with a finger while arguing. It does not have to involve injury. A battery is simply a “non consensual touching”. I have had cases where the wife has gone ballistic and attacked her husband slapping, scratching and screaming and all the husband has done is try to restrain her with a hug. The police almost always assume it is the man’s fault and arrest him and haul him off to jail, even over the objection of the wife or girlfriend. A domestic violence arrest can tear a family apart. The man is taken before a judge in the morning and most times, the judge enters a no contact order as a condition of bond. This can wreck the family. Most working couples or families cannot afford to have two places to live, one for the wife and one for the husband. Many families only have one car and both the husband and wife work. A no contact order can have a financially devastating impact on the average family. A domestic violence prosecution takes on a life of its own and is like a snowball rolling downhill. All of this begins with a 911 call.
Unless the arrest involves a pattern or real physical abuse, our goal at or criminal defense firm is to help the family deal with this problem. The no contact order needs to get lifted and changed to “no harmful contact”. We will most times contact the State Attorney’s office and try and reason with them. Many times, even if the wife does not want to go forward, the prosecutor will not want to hear it. The prosecutors almost always believe that there is major abuse and many feel they have an obligation to protect the woman, and many times, this is simply not true.
There are real consequences to a domestic battery conviction. Say good bye to your concealed weapons license and if convicted, you can end up doing time in County jail.
Often we can resolve these cases with counseling or anger management sessions. If alcohol is the underlying cause, we can help there too. Having an experienced good lawyer can make a huge difference in the outcome.
Jumping on the problem before it gets out of hand also can make a difference. We may be able to convince the prosecutor to drop the case or file a reduced charge if the original charge was aggravated battery. No two cases are the same and many times the wife and the husband want to reconcile and restore their relationship. Many times it is the wife that actually hires us to be the husband’s criminal defense lawyer.No two cases are the same and many times the wife and the husband want to reconcile and restore their relationship. Many times it is the wife that actually hires us to be the husband’s criminal defense lawyer.
If a loved one has been arrested because of a 911 call, at our criminal law office, it costs nothing for a free consultation. Most Fort Myers criminal defense lawyers will not charge you to simply come in and talk about getting help. Our philosophy where possible is to save the family relationship are get things back to normal. Help often is only a phone call away. Call Today People make mistakes: We are Not Here to Judge You, We are Here to Defend you.