Domestic violence describes crimes allegedly committed against a family member, domestic partner, or roommate. A domestic violence charge is also possible when the people involved are or were in a dating relationship.
Alleged victims of domestic violence may seek protection from their alleged abusers. If you are charged with a domestic violence crime, you could face immediate consequences even before a trial or guilty plea.
Seek legal counsel for representation during Bridgeport domestic violence investigations. These cases can significantly impact your life, and working with a lawyer is crucial to minimize the consequences you face.
What Happens When Police Respond to a Domestic Abuse Call?
When police receive a call indicating a possible domestic violence situation, they approach with the intent of protecting any vulnerable person who might be harmed. They will assess the alleged victim to determine whether they have physical injuries. The police will ask whether any children were present when the incident occurred.
Connecticut General Statute §46b-38b requires the police to arrest the person they believe is the dominant aggressor in a domestic violence situation. If children were present when the incident occurred, the police must report it to the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Police must make a report to DCF if children were home or nearby, even if no children witnessed the incident.
If the police found no evidence of a physical confrontation, they might not arrest anyone; however, this does not mean the matter is closed. The police could continue their investigation and interview the alleged victim and others to determine whether there is a pattern of threatening behavior that constitutes domestic violence.
Domestic Violence Arraignments in Bridgeport
Someone accused of domestic violence will be arraigned the next business day. The accused must have an in-depth interview with a Family Relations Officer at the arraignment. The Family Relations Officer will ask questions about the alleged crime and may probe into other areas not directly relevant to the charge.
The interview with the Family Relations Officer is not confidential. The officer will discuss an interviewee’s answers with the judge. Legal representation throughout the domestic violence interview and investigation is essential to protect an accused’s rights.
The judge usually issues an order of protection at the arraignment, which could prevent an accused from returning to their home or contacting the complainant or their children. If the accused and the complainant have children together, the protective order could bar the accused from visiting the children while it is in effect. Ruane Attorneys could work to prevent these life-changing repercussions.
If children were present during the incident that led to the domestic violence arrest, DCF will open an investigation. A social worker will go to the children’s residence and interview each of the children and anyone else living there. The social worker will also interview the person accused of domestic violence.
Families should cooperate with DCF but consult a Bridgeport attorney for help navigating the domestic violence investigation. DCF will share information it receives with the police and the criminal court if the social worker believes it is relevant to the criminal proceedings. Any parent involved with a DCF domestic abuse investigation should seek legal counsel.
The DCF worker assesses the home to determine whether it is a safe place for children. If the worker believes domestic violence might happen again, this will impact their recommendations. If the worker believes the alleged victim cannot protect the children from exposure to domestic violence, DCF might keep the family under supervision for an extended time.
Turn to a Bridgeport Attorney During a Domestic Violence Investigation
A domestic violence arrest is stressful and overwhelming. When you face these accusations, you need legal counsel to help you understand what to expect in Bridgeport domestic violence investigations.
Let Ruane Attorneys work to protect you and your family’s best interests. Contact our firm today to discuss your case.