If you have been the victimand want to press charges against your abuser but are afraid to do so, the first step you need to take is to reach out to a Los Angeles domestic violence attorney. Surprisingly, a Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer with domestic violence experience can often offer very sound advice as to your first steps depending on your circumstances. They will almost always include finding a way to make yourself safe from your abuser such as moving out.
You need to understand a few things about domestic violence. If you have been a victim, pressing charges may be emotionally and practically difficult, especially if the abuser is your spouse or the parent of your child. He or she may threaten you or attempt to prevent you from informing the police or testifying, which is illegal but can be quite coercive. And if the only evidence of the abuse is your word, the abuser’s defense lawyer will almost certainly attack your character in court, so you need to prepare to defend yourself despite your stressed emotional state. Once you have contacted a lawyer to begin preparing your legal charges, and moved out or done what you need to make yourself safe from the abuser, you should also call the police.
In dire circumstances, this should actually be your first step as the police should come and arrest the accused abuser and get him or her out of the house. They can also collect immediate evidence of the abuse at this point, or direct you to a police medical examiner to look for physical or emotional signs of abuse. This is important because this evidence will service as the primary foundation for your case and will make it more difficult for a Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer to weaken the case by assaulting your character. You will have to tell the police you want to press charges, and it can be difficult to persevere when put on the spot about having your partner tried for abuse. But in the end, nobody should live in fear of abuse, least of all children, so you will find you are doing the right thing to seek legal help and press domestic abuse charges.