I have been handling domestic violence cases in my 13 years of practice. Like all cases, each one is different. However, I do hear a common thread in many of these cases; “I was arrested because the cop said ‘when we get called on a domestic, someone has to go to jail’.”
I find this troubling as there is no statute requiring any officer to make an arrest because someone made a domestic violence allegation. To the contrary Florida Statute 741.29 state that “[w]hether or not an arrest is made, the officer shall make a written police report that is complete and clearly indicates the alleged offense was an incident of domestic violence.” Thus it gives an officer discretion to make an arrest or not make an arrest.
What this brings us to is, as I understand, local police departments have it in their own policy to arrest someone on a domestic violence call regardless if the evidence is unclear if an act of domestic violence has occurred. This means, it removes the requirement under Florida Statute 741.29, and our US constitution, that an arrest be made when there is “probable cause”.
This is policy is not helpful and causes irreparable damage to the family. That being said, I want to be clear, officers can and should arrest those they believe are “primary aggressors” in domestic violence acts, only when they have enough evidence to support their probable cause.
If you have been arrested for domestic violence call my office to see how I can help you.

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