The Victim In My Domestic Violence Case Has Dropped Charges Against Me. Why Hasn’t My Case Been Dismissed?
A lot of times people come to me and ask me why they keep having to come to court when the complaining witness in the case has told them they dropped the charges. There are a couple of different ways to answer that question. The first thing is that the complaining witness isn’t the one who filed the charges, it’s the prosecutor who is representing the state of Texas who is the one who actually files the criminal complaint, which is the formal charging document that sets forth the charges and accusations against you. So, just because the complaining witness or the alleged victim in the case has requested that the charges be dropped, that does not mean that the prosecutor is actually going to drop the charges.
In fact, a lot of times, many of the cases that go forward to trial, many of those people are convicted and sentenced to jail in cases where the complaining witness or alleged victim has requested that the charges be dropped. The other main reason why people may still be required to come to court even though the complaining witness tells them that they dropped the charges, is that sometimes the complaining witness may tell the defendant that they have requested that the charges be dropped when really they are telling something very different to the prosecutors. A lot of times, complaining witnesses will tell the prosecutors that they want to continue with the prosecution, or that they are afraid, or they are concerned with their safety if the charges were to be dropped, but then they tell the opposite story to the defendant in order to placate them or in order to avoid any future conflict between the parties.
So just because somebody is telling you that they dropped the charges, keep in mind that this isn’t always true. A lot of times, the prosecutor will keep going on with the charges even if the charges they have requested be dropped but a lot of times the complaining witness may be telling you something different than what they are telling the prosecutors.
Do not take this as an opportunity to question whether the victim in your case has actually requested that the charges be dropped; such an action will only serve to worsen the situation, and ultimately, the prosecutors may use against you any pressure that they have found that you have attempted to put on the victim to drop the charges. Consult with your attorney, and to the extent possible, let the attorney handle interactions with the complaining witness.
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