DC Roommate Violence Lawyer 

A DC roommate violence lawyer knows the facts surrounding a domestic violence charge. Domestic violence in Washington, DC is not considered to be its own criminal charge. Domestic violence is handled in a special court comprised of judges who handle only domestic violence cases at the DC Superior Court.

When deciding whether a criminal case is prosecuted in the domestic violence courts, the prosecutors filing the charges must determine the relationship between the accuser and the accused. When there is an intrafamily relationship, the criminal charge can be filed as a domestic violence offense.

Talk to a skilled attorney today about roommate violence accusations.

Intrafamily Relationships

Intrafamily relationships include more than blood relationships. Familial relationships, romantic relationships, sexual relationships, and domestic relationships can all constitute intrafamily relationships. Offenses alleged to have been committed between people who share that relationship are considered intrafamily offenses and are prosecuted as domestic violence offenses. Domestic relationships can be present even when there is no romantic relationship between the people involved. Consult with a DC roommate violence lawyer for more information on intrafamily relationships.

Roommate Violence Charge

People who share a domicile such as roommates can be charged in the domestic violence court at DC Superior Court even when the roommates are the same gender, different genders, or have no romantic or sexual relationship at all. If two female roommates get into a fight where one of the roommates accuses the other roommate of starting the fight and committing an assault, the accuser can file a complaint with the DC Metropolitan Police Department. Officers from the Metropolitan Police Department come to the apartment and may decide to arrest the other roommate and charge them with an assault in the domestic violence court of DC Superior Court. This is one type of situation where an alleged assault committed by one roommate against another roommate can be charged by prosecutors as a domestic violence offense.

Protecting from a False Accusation of Roommate Violence

When a person is falsely accused of violence against a roommate, many times they want to reach out to the police and explain themselves or they want to speak to their roommate directly about the allegations. It is always important to speak with a DC roommate violence lawyer before making any statements to the roommate or the police. When statements are made to the police, a person may believe their statement exonerates them or provides an explanation to a roommate that would clear them of any charges. Once a statement is made, it cannot be taken back, so a person may not be aware of the consequences of making such a statement.

When a person believes they are falsely accused and confronts their accuser, they could face allegations of obstruction of justice, or attempting to tamper with witnesses. Those situations are extremely serious. The person faces the possibility of years of prison time if prosecutors believe there was an attempt to influence a witness or influence an accuser, even if it is an attempt to clear up confusion or resolve the matter.

Contacting a DC Roommate Violence Lawyer

There are often misunderstandings when a person is accused or investigated for a fight between roommates. It is surprising that relatively minor tussles between roommates that do not seem to be a crime can be fully investigated and even charged as domestic violence offenses. People are surprised to be in that situation because they do not see themselves as committing a domestic violence offense or as domestic abusers.

Based on the rules and the procedures of DC Superior Court, a person can be charged with domestic offense simply for getting into a fight with a roommate who may also be a friend. In this situation, the rules can be confusing and are often inconsistent with someone’s understanding of how they believe these types of situations work. It is helpful to speak with a DC roommate violence lawyer who can guide a person through the procedure of facing domestic violence charges to help them understand their constitutional rights.

A DC roommate violence lawyer can correct the misunderstandings and can assist a person facing these kinds of charges and prevent them from making costly errors that could result in serious penalties of jail time or a permanent criminal record.