Does An Alleged Physical Altercation Have To Have Taken Place In Order For An Arrest In Michigan To Be Made On A Domestic Violence Incident?
In the current environment, just about every 911 call for domestic violence will result in an arrest. For example, let’s assume the police show up, and there’s no evidence that either party has been the victim of an actual battery, but one side says, “He threw the TV remote at me and missed.” Such a statement would likely lead to the arrest of the person who allegedly threw the TV remote. There are any number of accusations that can be made that do not involve an actual physical altercation that can serve as the basis of a domestic violence incident. So, this leads to the related question of whether some circumstances and situations are considered domestic violence under the law that does not involve a physical altercation. Many people would be surprised that such behavior frequently does fall under the purview of a domestic violence statute.
So for example, throwing something at someone, threatening them with immediate harm, preventing someone from leaving their house, hanging up the phone, or preventing someone from making a phone call, and grabbing someone’s phone and taking it away from them so that you restrict their ability to report something or call 911 are all examples of situations that do not involve an actual physical altercation but are commonly prosecuted in a domestic violence context. Any number of actions are prosecuted in the domestic violence context that goes well beyond the simple battery or physical altercation of one partner to another.
How Will Or Does Law Enforcement Determine Who Was The Aggressor When They Come To The Scene?
Unfortunately, for most men, police officers generally will start with the sort of stereotype presumption that it was the man who was the aggressor. Now, that is not a hard-and-fast rule anymore, and certainly, increasing numbers of women are being arrested for domestic violence. The first thing the police are going to look at is who called 911. So, in other words, was the assault and battery going on at the time of the phone call? Can you hear something going on while the 911 call was being made? Statements made during a 911 call are typically exceptions to the hearsay rule because they are defined as “excited utterances.” The content of the 911 call will be used to determine who is the aggressor and who should be the party charged with domestic violence.
The next thing police will look at is if either party is injured. Finally, the police are going to take a hard look at the demeanor of the parties: is one of them out of control, ranting and raving hysterically? Is the other calm and logical and trying to help the police? However, that can sometimes cut both ways, as the victim of domestic violence could very well be the one that’s markedly hysterical because they had just been attacked. All of these things will go into the determination of who the police are going to arrest at the scene. Once the police officers at the scene determine who they’re going to arrest, it is uncommon for the prosecutor to charge anyone other than the person who got arrested. So, in other words, the prosecutor will look at the police reports, and 99% of the time charge the person that got arrested and not go against the determination of the police officers that arrived at the scene.
For more information on Domestic Violence Law in Michigan, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (248) 509-0056 today.