"Domestic violence" means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.
"Family or household member" means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.
Domestic Violence is complex and highly specialized area of law. Florida aggressively prosecutes crimes of Domestic Violence. Generally, the State Attorney's Office will create a Special Unit with experienced Assistant State Attorneys to prosecute allegations of suspected offenders of Domestic Violence.
All too often there is a mistaken belief that a victim of a crime has the right to "drop" the charges. However, the State Attorney's Office has sole discretion on whether to file a criminal charge. The State Attorney's Office will actively encourage a victim to prosecute even if they retract their initial statement to the police, file a waiver of prosecution, or decline to cooperate.
If you were wrongly accused of a crime, you must act quickly to retain an attorney who can effectively and aggressively handle these cases on your behalf.
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