Domestic Assault: What to Do If You Are Charged and Arrested

Domestic assault is a common criminal offence where arguments can escalate and turn physical when involved in a relationship. A person does not have to be legally married to the other to file a complaint of domestic assault. Domestic assault applies to any type of relationship between people, such as brothers and sisters, parents and children, cohabiting couples, and recently dating couples.

While assault laws are meant to help seek justice and protect injured parties, complaints for domestic assault are sometimes misrepresented by the complainant. It is not unheard of where one person will get upset because their loved one did or did not do something they wanted.

They might get into an argument and things could escalate. If one person loses their temper at this point and physically assaults the other, then they have committed a criminal offence. However, if the other person simply walks away, until things cool down they have done nothing wrong.

Unfortunately, this is where the law can sometimes be abused. The other person is still angry and fuming so they call the police filing a complaint of domestic assault. At this point the police are required by law to investigate the claim.

They may self-infect bruises, cuts, scrapes, or other injuries to make it appear like they were assaulted. When the police show up, if it appears as though assault occurred, then they could arrest the suspect. Granted, they will talk to the suspect to hear their side of things, but even after that, if they have doubts, they could still arrest the person.

Upon being arrested and charged for domestic assault, you will be held for a period of time in jail prior to your bail hearing. During your bail hearing, the court will determine if you should be released or held until your case is fully resolved.

The Crown’s lawyers are present to ensure the terms of your bail release are to their satisfaction. In some cases, release will not be granted if the Crown’s lawyers feel the person is a potential threat and may cause further crimes upon release.

After being arrested and charged and prior to your bail hearing, you do have the legal right to consult with your own criminal defence lawyer in Toronto. Having a lawyer present during the bail hearing can make the process easier.

In many cases, the person charged with domestic assault has never had any prior legal issues. This could be the first time they have seen the inside of a jail cell, as well as their first time in criminal court. All of this can be very overwhelming and it can be tempting to just plead guilty to the charges and be done with it.

However, that is never a good idea and you will want to exercise your legal rights to achieve the most favourable outcomes possible. If you, a friend, or family member has been charged with domestic assault, please feel free to contact Toronto criminal defence lawyer, Jeff Hershberg at 416-428-7360 for a consultation today!