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03 Oct 2012

Police: Please Use Common Sense Before Arresting A Senior Citizen

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ADP was served with a domestic violence injunction and immediately retained Jeffrey H. Garland.  The hearing began just five days after Attorney Garland was retained.

ADPs wife was the only witness to testify in support of the injunction.  She made several claims against her husband.  In the most significant allegation, the wife claimed that ADP had cut her eyeball while she was sleeping.  This alleged incident did not cause the wife to awake.  She testified that the next morning, she had an irritation in her eye, which she believed was caused by being cut with a knife on the eyeball.  Other allegations were similarly disjointed and non-sensical.

Unfortunately, many abusive persons claim that they are victim is crazy or has mental problems.  It is always difficult for a judge to sort out these issues.  If the allegations of mental health issues are not strongly supported, most judges will disregard any such claims.

At this domestic violence injunction hearing, however, ADP was able to call eight witnesses.  These witnesses, who included the wife’s own sister, documented a pattern of unusual behavior over an extended period of time.  Based on the testimony presented, Judge Barbara Bronis ruled in favor of ADP and denied the domestic violence injunction.  This would not be the end of the case.

The State elected to pick up a charge of domestic battery in connection with an alleged incident on September 30, 2007.  During this alleged incident, the wife claimed that her husband kissed her against her will.  She claimed that the incident caused injury to her neck and back.

In preparing the criminal defense, Attorney Garland moved for orders authorizing disclosure of treatment records by the wife’s eye doctor and to conduct the deposition of the wife’s chiropractor.  The optometrist’s records established that the wife was seen several days after the incident involving the cut eyeball.  The optometrist diagnosed dermatitis on the outside portion of the wife’s right eye.  There was no observation of any cutting or poking to the eye with a sharp instrument.

The chiropractor’s deposition disclosed that the wife had been seeing the chiropractor for some ten years.  She had been complaining of the same symptoms over the course of the entire ten years.  The symptoms could be associated with several previous car accidents and, possibly, with the aging process.  No new or different injury could be associated with the kissing incident.

On January 31, 2008, ADP announced ready for trial.  The case was set for jury selection on February 4, 2008.  On the day the jury was to be chosen, the State elected to file a nolle prosequi (drop all charges).

Following his arrest for domestic battery, and while the temporary injunction was pending, ADP was required to turn all of his firearms over to the custody of the St. Lucie County Sheriff.  Following the nolle prosequi of the domestic battery charge, Attorney Garland filed a motion for order authorizing release of 39 firearms.

The arrest record and court file were subsequently expunged.

The husband and wife are reunited. The officer would never, I think, have made the arrest if he had simply thought about the claims. The family was forced to go through the expense of a bail bond and attorney fees. The only good part  was that the entire family came together to see that the wife (or sister or mother depending upon the relationship) received appropriate treatment on account of which she is doing much better.

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