Understanding Police Obligation in Suspected Domestic Violence Cases
Today, on Redhead Mom, I’m sharing a partnered guest post about understanding police obligation in suspected domestic violence cases.
Some states, like Colorado, for instance, have particular rules in place about domestic violence cases. If your neighbor calls, for example, and says you and your partner next door make noise in the evenings, and the neighbor feels there’s domestic violence happening, the police must investigate. They’ll show up at your door with questions for you that you must answer.
Police must arrest you if they suspect domestic violence, and you should understand that. Even if you state you did nothing wrong, police obligation might mean you end up in a cell that same day. Let’s talk about police obligation in domestic violence cases.
What About What the Alleged Victim Says?
Let’s stick with that same example. A neighbor called and said they felt perhaps you committed a violent act next door, or maybe your spouse attacked you or threw something at you instead. The cops show up and ask you what happened. They will likely interview your spouse or partner as well.
We’ll say the police notice your partner has a bruise. Maybe they look scared, or perhaps they’re using other body language that indicates they’re worried or fearful.
Even if your spouse or partner says in this scenario that you didn’t harm them and they’re in no danger, the police still might arrest you. What the alleged victim says in this scenario doesn’t matter, at least not when you look at Colorado law.
If the police feel, using their best judgment, that they’re looking at a possible domestic violence situation, they must arrest you. This means you might have a situation sometimes when you’ll face a false or unjustified arrest.
What Happens if the Police Arrest You Unjustly?
The police can misjudge a situation in some cases. They’re not perfect, and they might misinterpret something they notice when they show up at your front door.
For instance, if they see your spouse crying, maybe they’ll suspect abuse, even if your spouse just watched an emotional moment in a TV show, and that’s why they’re upset. Perhaps the police also see a bruise on their body that they got playing football in the park with friends, and they think you struck your spouse because of that.
Situations like this can sometimes happen. The police might draw the wrong conclusion sometimes, despite having the best of intentions.
If this happens, you’ll end up in jail, but hopefully, you can prove your innocence. You will need a reliable criminal defense lawyer, though. Your reputation can quickly suffer if you can’t exonerate yourself, and appearances matter. They impact your community standing and reputation.
If the police arrest you thinking you committed a violent act against someone you love, that might upset you, but you should realize they didn’t do it intentionally. Sometimes people make mistakes, and that doesn’t mean you should resent the police. If you turn it around and see things their way, you can see how these wrongful arrests can sometimes occur.