No one is immune to the consequences of being accused of domestic violence – just ask actor Johnny Depp.
On May 23, Depp’s wife, Amber Heard, filed for divorce and asked for spousal support. Two days after Depp rejected her request, she claimed in court that Depp had abused her throughout their 5-year relationship. Heard had a bruise on the right side of her eye, which she said was from the most recent case of Depp’s abuse.
This comes at a very unfortunate time for Johnny Depp. Three days before Heard filed divorce, he suffered the loss of his mother. On May 27, when Heard appeared in court, Depp’s latest film Alice Through the Looking Glass was released in theaters. So far, the movie has been bombing at the box office.
A judge has ordered Depp to refrain from contacting or seeing Heard. Depp’s lawyer stated that he is willing to comply with the request.
But Heard’s accusation only marks the beginnings of Johnny Depp’s problems.
What Happens after an Accusation of Domestic Violence
If you are charged or convicted with domestic violence, you will face consequences that will affect you for the rest of your life. Even if you are innocent of the crime, the accusation alone will raise the eyebrows of your coworkers and friends.
And, of course, Colorado has harsh policies regarding domestic violence. Let’s look at a few of the everyday effects of a domestic violence charge/conviction:
- You WILL be arrested. There is a big difference between how California and Colorado would handle a case like Depp’s. Earlier in the week, police had been called to Depp’s home regarding a domestic violence case. But no charges were filed, so no arrests were made.
This wouldn’t happen in Colorado. Ours is a mandatory arrest state. If peace officers are called to a scene for domestic violence, a guilty party will be determined and an arrest will be made. Even if a victim wants to drop domestic violence charges and see the defendant freed, they can’t. The state will continue to prosecute someone accused of domestic violence unless the prosecutor determines that the case should be dropped.
- You reputation will be harmed: Singer Chris Brown was arrested in 2009 for assaulting his then-girlfriend Rihanna. It has since taken years for Chris Brown to bounce back into the good graces of the music and entertainment industry. A domestic violence conviction, or allegation, may negatively affect your reputation among or relationships with your loved ones, your friends, and your coworkers.
- Your housing options may be limited: Many housing locations will automatically disqualify you from living there if you have a domestic violence charge or conviction on your record. Getting a loan for a house may be just as frustrating. Banks and mortgage companies are weary of repeat offenders, and fear that the person convicted of domestic violence will end up in jail and default on his or her loans.
- Your employment opportunities may dwindle: Depending on your employment situation at the time of your arrest, you may immediately lose your job. Finding a new job in public service is close to impossible with a domestic violence conviction. And while not every job conducts a background check, domestic violence convictions are public information, and a job will most likely come across your name and history with a quick search.
- You will lose your right to bear arms: A domestic violence conviction will restrict you from owning a weapon for the rest of your life.
As you can see, a domestic violence charge or conviction can affect you for the rest of your life. The only way to protect your freedom, your future, and your reputation is to fight back. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney today for a free consultation and a review of your defense strategy options.
About the Author:
Kimberly Diego is a criminal defense attorney in Denver practicing at The Law Office of Kimberly Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her law degree at the University of Colorado. She was named one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars of 2012” and “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Colorado” for 2012 and 2013 by The National Trial Lawyers. Both honors are limited to a small percentage of practicing attorneys in each state. She has also been recognized for her work in domestic violence cases.