Manhattan Beach, Wife Strangled, Delayed Entry of Plea, Dismissal

Our client, age 35, was charged with misdemeanor domestic violence (Penal Code section 273.5) arising out of an incident where his wife claimed he and she were fighting and he hit her.  Naturally, our client was also battered and in fact had many pictures of blood and scratches to his face.  Our client’s wife claimed a bruise to her neck was from our client strangling her, but this bruise was suspect, as it was accompanied by scratches that she could not explain (she was wearing a turtleneck sweater at the time of the alleged incident).
In a Nutshell:  Manhattan Beach, Client Allegedly Strangled His Wife, but Greg Hill & Associates Successfully Attacks Her Credibility, Delayed Entry of Judgment and Dismissal.
Our client first opted to use the public defender, but was disappointed with his enthusiasm and urging our client to take a plea immediately.  Our client then hired Greg Hill & Associates.

The first order of business was to have the protective order immediately modified to “harassment only” from stay away by 100 yards, as our client needed access to the family home for a place to live.  Greg Hill appeared in court the very next day with the client and his wife.

This is where the prosecution case fell apart, as the District Attorney asked to speak to the wife prior to agreeing to have the protective order modified.  During this meeting, the wife exaggerated so much and flat out lied in such a manner that her credibility became the biggest issue of the case.  

The District Attorney did not realize this and agreed to have the protective order modified.

Greg Hill then wrote a Defense Position Letter, documenting the wife’s long history of violence,  hot temper manifesting itself in violent episodes and her uncanny ability to impeach herself as she did in meeting with the District Attorney on the protective order modification.  Greg Hill argued that such facts suggested she would be a poor witness at trial.  Greg Hill also laid out California law on mutual combat and self defense, while showing the District Attorney examples of the client’s good character and reputation.  Greg Hill argued for a dismissal in negotiations.

After many months of negotiations and court appearances, the District Attorney finally agreed to allow our client to enter a plea bargain to a lesser charge, simple battery, and dismiss the domestic violence charge.  In addition, the District Attorney agreed to allow our client to withdraw his plea in a year if he completed certain classes, paid fines to the court and made a donation to a battered women’s shelter.  While it was not the immediate dismissal of the case, it was an opportunity for a dismissal and the client agreed to the deal proposed.

Had our client rejected the deal, proceeded to trial and lost, he faced a criminal record with a conviction for domestic violence, as well as a maximum of one year in jail and $1,000 in fines.  This was unacceptable in light of his career goals and having a young child who he wanted to spend time with as she grew up.

For more information about delayed entry of judgment, bail, and domestic violence in general, click on the following articles:
  1. What Is Diversion, Delayed Entry of Plea and Deferred Entry of Judgment?
  2. How Do I Get Bail Reduced?
  3. What Punishment Do I Face For Domestic Violence?
Watch our Video about Domestic Violence by clicking here.

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