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I made a false statement against my Ex. He got arrested. need info on getting charges dropped

Albuquerque, NM |

I called police on my ex because I was angry he no longer wanted me and made up a story to the police. The whole statement I gave them was false. He then got arrested. Him and two other people because of what I said. I spoke with police to let them know that I was lieing. Will charges get dropped.

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Attorney answers 1


First, I am not licensed in New Mexico and do not know the local practices. However, I have extensive practice in Washington state in domestic violence, representing those accused and those who have made the accusations.

You may face the possibility of a criminal charge of making a false police report. In most cases, the prosecution cannot proceed at the time of trial if the complaining witness does not appear. But the prosecution can subpoena you, and the law would permit the court to have you arrested if you failed to appear in response to a lawfully served subpoena.

To testify, you are required to swear under oath that everything you say is the truth. If you testify that you lied to the police, none of it happened, the prosecution is permitted to ask you about all the things you said to the police and let the jury decide whether you are telling the truth on the stand. I have seen cases where a defendant is found guilty although the complaining witness says it never happened.

In cases of domestic violence, where there is a cycle of abuse within the relationship, it is not unusual that a victim calls for help when she needs help, and later regrets causing the problem with the authorities. Often the abuser and victim reconcile after the explosion of violence and anger. He calms down and remembers he loves her; she calms down and wants to be loved. He promises it will never happen again; she wants to believe him. She thinks if she really loves him just right, just enough, he'll stop hitting her. Sometimes during this phase, she decides she'll tell people she made it all up, she lied, it didn't really happen. Sometimes she almost comes to believe it didn't happen. But then tensions build again over time, and at some point he explodes again, and she is afraid or gets hurt. Then sometimes she calls for help again. And we're back in the circle.

Because of this well-recognized cycle, the legal system has attempted to break it. The system does not let the victim decide whether the case proceeds or not. The system proceeds based on what the victim said when she was afraid and/or hurt. The goal is to persuade victims that they have an alternative to living in this cycle, and that people will believe them.

Because you may face a criminal charge for making a false police report, I strongly urge you to obtain your own lawyer. That lawyer can also help advise you on whether the subpoena that is sent to you is enforceable, and walk you through your genuine options, based on the local practices in your area.

To learn more about the cycle of domestic violence, take a look at "Getting Free" by Ginny Nicarthy, or call a domestic violence hotline. Or Google for websites.

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