Domestic Violence in Albuquerque is taken very seriously. The District Attorneys in Albuquerque, and many others throughout New Mexico have a very strict policy against dismissing domestic violence cases no matter how weak the evidence.
In fact, they rarely dismiss a domestic violence case even when it is perfectly clear that there was no act of domestic violence committed.
This position seems unreasonable to most, particularly those caught up in this policy. The policy is extremely frustrating for those wrongfully accused and forced to endure a wrongful prosecution.
Often times, even the alleged victim suffers the severe financial and emotional consequences of these policies. In short, a domestic violence proceeding is extremely stressful, and a even just the charge of domestic violence can have significant consequences.
This is true for U.S. citizens. The consequences for non-citizens can be disastrous. A conviction for domestic violence can result in deportation and inadmissibility of non-citizens.
There are few options for domestic violence cases. Typically, the most a district attorney will offer is Early Intervention Program. This program ultimately results in a dismissal. However admission to the program requires an admission of responsibility. Some judges require an admission of guilt.
These admissions can trigger the immigration consequences of deportation and inadmissibility. As a result, Early Intervention Program is probably not an option for the non-citizen. An admission of guilt is simply not an option for the non-citizen.
Often, the only option for the non-citizen is a trial. And any trial carries risks due to the unpredictable nature of jury trials, or bench trials for that matter.
If you are not a citizen and you are facing domestic violence charges, you need to be very careful about taking any kind of plea. If you have the resources, you should seek the assistance of both a criminal attorney and an immigration attorney so that you can understand and weigh all of your options.
Be careful, or you may feel the fleeting joy of what is seemingly a beneficial outcome of your case, as you soon learn that you are now subject to deportation.
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