Assault and battery charges are fairly common when coming to criminal charges for domestic violence. Battery involves a person illegally touching another person, it doesn’t have to be direct contact to be categorized as a battery charge, as even the act of spitting on someone would be a battery charge, even trying to hit someone with a bat, this means no injury is required but if there is one that might be shown by the intensity of the sentence.
On the other hand assault charges can simply be an attempt of battery that didn’t go through, or putting someone in the fear of battery. As far as dropping the charges against the defendant as the victim in Virginia, is only your choice when it is civil case you are fighting and not a criminal domestic violence case.
In a civil domestic violence case a person charges a person with assault and battery in hopes of some monetary returns in terms of the damages caused, this means they are asking for a price for the other person’s misconduct, in this case the victim can drop the charges against the defendant at any time with his choice.
Secondly, when someone is charged with a criminal domestic violence case the state intervenes and the victim is simply one party involved in the story and his or her cooperation is not require by the prosecutor to carry on with the case, even If the victim wants to drop charges it is solely dependent on the government of attorney to decide to take things ahead. This is stated clearly in Virginia arrest warrants, often ignored by people that says “by signing this order of arrest, the officer and the complaining witness give up the ability to drop the charges later, and only the judge and prosecutor can drop the charge. The commonwealth that is viewed to work in everyone’s interest is then in charge, and they decide how to carry the case and are not bound by the alleged victim’s denial.
Lastly when the alleged victim wants to drop civil charges the attorney can compel the alleged victim to go with the criminal case as a witness, the court summons them to testify, and not doing so can show them to be in contempt of court and have criminal charges against themselves. Some witnessed on the other hand can be barred of testifying in light of the Fifth Amendment protection, which is on the judge to decide whether the victim has that privilege or not.
It’s ensured by the court in many cases that, an order of protection is given so the accused is as less of contact with the accuser as possible, this ensure that the accusers decision is his own and not influenced and enforced by the accused. Limited contact keeps the embarrassment of the witness not cooperating and favoring the accused out of the court, as well as ensure transparent and fair sentences.