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False accusations of domestic assault are a growing trend

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There is no question that spousal abuse is a heinous crime in Ontario. Its victims are often vulnerable and emotionally damaged by long-term mistreatment. This is why domestic assault is rightly taken seriously by law enforcement and advocates. However, the high-profile nature of the cause has also allowed it to be misused too often. When this happens, a person who is innocent may face detrimental consequences from one accusation.

When police were called to your house for a domestic disturbance, they were prepared for the worst-case scenario. Because a victim of domestic abuse often lives in fear of retaliation, police policy is to arrest the alleged abuser regardless of the lack of evidence. You were probably taken from the home in a police car and charged with a serious crime. It can happen very quickly, and before you knew it, you were behind bars awaiting a trial.

Because of the ease with which one can cause a spouse to be arrested, and the dire consequences that may follow, there is a disturbing trend in which embittered spouses falsely accuse their partners of domestic abuse. They do this for a variety of reasons, including as a way to sway Ontario family court decisions, especially those involving child custody. Accusers know they will get the benefit of the doubt because courts generally err on the side of caution in favor of the victim of alleged domestic abuse.

Accusations of domestic assault carry heavy consequences if they lead to conviction. You may lose your job, your home and access to your children. Such charges are also complicated to defend because they involve proving innocence, which may be more difficult than proving guilt. Having a lawyer with extensive experience defending cases of domestic abuse will be essential to protecting your reputation, your parental rights and your freedom.

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