Monterey County (Seaside) Domestic Violence Case Dismissed
Our client, a 23 year-old man from Seaside, was arrested after getting into an altercation with his husband. At the time, our client's husband was an active-duty Army soldier. Even though our client was half the size of his husband, the Presidio of Monterey police decided that our client was the “dominant aggressor.” (Read about law enforcement's responsibility to accurately determine the dominant aggressor.)
Since our client's husband claimed he sustained bite marks, a bruised lip, and scratches as a result of the altercation, our client was arrested and taken to Monterey County Jail.
The Monterey County District Attorney charged our client with one count of “inflicting corporal injury on a cohabitant or spouse” (Penal Code Section 273.5(a)). The initial offer made by the prosecutor was to plead guilty to the domestic violence charge with a punishment of forty days in Monterey County Jail, fifty-two weeks of anger management classes, a fine, probation and a permanent crime of violence on our client's record. We entered a plea of “not guilty” and proceeded to fight the case.
After reviewing all of the discovery and doing a thorough investigation, we uncovered significant flaws with the prosecutor's case. Following several discussions with the District Attorney and the judge, we convinced the District Attorney that we had a strong self-defense argument. We told the District Attorney that we would be taking the case to trial if they did not dismiss. In response, the District Attorney dismissed the case completely. Our client, who had never been arrested before this, still has a clean record today.