My roommate and I got into an argument about weed. It was in public and was verbal at first but then he threatened me physically. I called the cops but as I was on the phone with the dispatcher he bumped me into a hood of a car and threw a punch. I ducked and wrestled my way out and ran into a local 711 because I knew there were going to be cameras. Cops came, he admitted he was the aggressor and a witness claimed it as well. He was arrested and charged with A&B 209A. During the fight my headphones were ripped out of my hand and I got a small cut. I didn't press any charges but I was informed of a "pre-trial" court date that he'll be in and was wondering what that is, should I go and what are the punishments for the crime?
As the victim of a crime, you are entitled to be fully informed of the criminal proceedings against the defendant including court dates, an explanation of the nature of the proceedings and the outcomes. You may contact the Victim Advocates' Office of the District Attorney's Office in the district court that has jurisdiction for specific information about the case (in Boston, Suffolk County District Attorney's Office at Boston Municipal Court).
At the pre-trial conference, the defense counsel and the assistant district attorney share limited information about the case including police reports, witness statements and possible defenses. Plea bargaining also takes place.
As for simple Assault & Battery, the maximum penalty is 2 1/2 years in the house of correction (M.G.L. Chapter 265, Section 13A).
Any comments made on this website relate to general trends in the law and are not to be construed or understood as legal advice, nor establishing an attorney/client relationship. Please consult with an attorney in your jurisdiction before making any legal decisions. I am licensed in Massachusetts and U.S. District Court for the district of Massachusetts.
As was stated in a previous answer, as an alleged victim you are entitled to know certain things. Along with that, you also have certain rights. Under the federal Violence Against Women Act, you cannot be compelled to testify against your will. This federal law applies to the states, and applies whether you are male or female.
The bottom line is that it is up to you whether you want to be a witness against your friend.
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