VIOLATION OF HARASSMENT PREVENTION ORDER DISMISSED

On July 22, 2014 AA, a 35 year old banker living in Somerville, was served with an Harassment Prevention Order that had been taken out by one of his roommates. The Somerville Police served the order at about 6:00 PM and instructed AA that he was to have no verbal contact with his roommate. At about 7:00 PM that same night AA was at home and his roommate came into the apartment. The roommate claimed that AA said to him “What’s with the restraining order?” The roommate called 911; the police responded; AA denied saying anything to the roommate. The police arrested AA and charged him with violating the order. AA retained Attorney Robert Lewin.
Attorney Lewin spoke with the DA’s Office. Ever since the Jared Remy case the Middlesex County DA’s Office has taken a hard line on all “domestic abuse” cases and they refuse to dismiss them. AA had a fear of trial and was extremely reluctant to try the case. Attorney Lewin encouraged AA to take the case to trial as Attorney Lewin felt it would be extremely difficult for the Commonwealth to get a conviction given the lack of any corroboration of the roommate’s claim.On September 12, 2014, at the pre-trial hearing the DA’s Office refused to dismiss the case. The case was set down for trial on November 4, 2014. In the week before November 4, 2014 Attorney Lewin and AA and a witness met twice to prepare the case for trial. AA was fully prepared to testify and he was fully prepared for cross examination. On November 4, 2014 AA and his witness and Attorney Lewin appeared at court and answered ready for trial when the case was called. The DA’s Office had to answer that they were not ready for trial as their witness (the roommate) had failed to appear. Attorney Lewin moved to dismiss the case and the judge ordered the case dismissed for lack of prosecution. The lesson in this is don’t be afraid to go to trial when you have a good case.