Like citizens in most states, Pennsylvanians consider conflict in a personal relationship to be a sensitive topic. When talking about domestic violence, however, they usually think of two people in an intimate relationship that has become physically violent, with one person becoming the abuser and the other the victim. Abuse, however, can also be emotional. Victims are often threatened by their abusers, a pattern that often only ends when the victim decides to report the abuse. An abuse charge is often taken so seriously that a false accusation can create severe problems for the accused.
One recent incident in Bensalem shows just how serious such a charge can be and how seriously the backlash can be for the accuser if the allegations are proven unfounded. One woman was arrested after filing false assault charges earlier this year against her former boyfriend. According to the Bensalom Police, the 30-year-old woman filed the charges to prevent the man from getting custody of their child. Prosecutors later discovered a video in which the woman confessed that her injuries were self-inflicted and not caused by her ex-boyfriend. The woman now faces criminal charges.
This case shows that charges of a criminal nature are sometimes used to prevent one parent from getting or sharing child custody. Anyone falsely accused of a crime, including domestic violence, should aggressively fight the charges, especially if the accused knows the allegations have no merit. It is important to fight the allegations because they not only affect standing in child-custody cases, but they also can lead to a restraining order.
A restraining order can be temporary or permanent. These orders are issued to prevent an abuser from approaching his or her victim. Pennsylvanians who face such problems should consult with an experienced family law professional to determine how to deal with their cases.
Source: ABC 27, "Police: NJ woman faked Pennsylvania assault," July 12, 2014