A client of our firm was arrested and charged with a felony domestic assault case. D.H. was out of town for a social function with his wife when he was arrested and charged with a felony domestic assault case. The husband and wife we out at a party and they had been drinking. At the end of the night the couple was arguing in the hallway of the hotel. The argument became physical and the wife struck D.H. repeatedly in the face with an open hand. D.H. defended himself by raising his hand up and pushing his wife away. When he raised up his hand it landed in the area of the wife’s neck. As the argument was developing the parties were very loud and an eye witness came out of their room just as D.H. put his hands up to protect himself and push his wife away. The wife fell to the ground crying and upset. The police were called by multiple witnesses. Before the police arrived on the scene D.H. tried to get his wife up off the floor and bring her into their room. The wife was upset and refused to get up as she was crying and yelling at her husband. D.H. picked up his wife and pulled her into their room.
When the police arrived they spoke to one of the eye witnesses who explained that she observed D.H. place his hands on her neck and grab her by the arm. The police spoke to the wife and asked if D.H. placed his hands on her neck. She responded that he did place his hands on her neck and that he was angry. The police arrested D.H. for domestic assault in the second degree a class C felony and felonious restraint. D.H. was taken to jail and held for a period of 24 hours and released without charges being brought by the prosecuting attorney. Sometime later the police officer met with the prosecuting attorney and they decided to charge D.H. with a class C felony of domestic assault in the second degree. The prosecuting attorney never spoke to the wife in this case to understand what really happened.
Domestic assault in the second degree is a class C felony with a range of punishment of up to a maximum term of imprisonment of seven years and a fine up to $5000. A warrant was issued in the case and D.H. had to surrender himself. Our office negotiated his surrender so that he could post a minimum bond so that he would not have to sit in jail. Our office attacked this case from the beginning. We contacted the prosecuting attorney and explained that this case was a big misunderstanding and that the State did not have all of the facts. Immediately we contacted all of the witnesses so that we could start building our defense to show that D. H. did not commit a felony assault. We contacted all of the witnesses listed in the police report as we tried to determine what exactly happened. As we worked through the evidence in the case it was clear that D.H. did not commit a felony assault.
Our client was a victim of bad timing. When the police arrived on the scene they rushed to judgment and assumed that our client was the aggressor. The first witness they spoke to only saw our client putting his hand up and making contact with his wife in the neck. The police failed to investigate the case and get the complete story. We presented our evidence to the prosecuting attorney to show that our client had not committed a crime but was in fact acting in self defense. Our office quickly moved for a preliminary hearing in this case. A preliminary hearing requires the state to produce witnesses to show probable cause that our client committed the offense of Domestic Assault. On the day of the preliminary hearing the prosecuting attorney agreed to dismiss the charge of domestic assault in the second degree.
It is important in any criminal case to have the right attorney on your side. You need an experienced attorney such as Gary Lauber to investigate your case and fight for your innocence. Our firm could have easily taken this case and worked out a plea deal. Instead, we chose to listen to our client and aggressively investigate his case to prove his innocence. It is important to have an attorney that will listen to you and be willing to fight on your behalf. We spent the time necessary to investigate this case and prove to the prosecuting attorney that our client was acting in self defense.
If you are a loved one has been charged with a serious felony contact Sansone & Lauber at 314-863-0500 to set up a free consultation.