On December 31, 2016 (New Years Eve day) WQ, a 27 year old software engineer who is a resident alien from Russia, got into an argument with her husband. The couple live in Andover, MA. WQ lost control and physically attacked her husband scratching his face and arms and back. He fled the house and went to the police station. He told the police he did not want her arrested. The police photographed his injuries and then went to the house and arrested WQ. She admitted to the police that she had scratched him but she said it was in self-defense.
WQ consulted with and retained Attorney Robert Lewin of North Andover. Attorney Lewin was quite familiar with WQ and her husband as Attorney Lewin had represented her husband one year earlier in a domestic assault charge that had been filed against the husband by WQ. (See the posting on this blog dated February 24, 2016). The husband agreed to have Attorney Lewin represent his wife in this case.
After reviewing the facts it became clear to Attorney Lewin that a good case of self-defense could be made out by WQ. Attorney Lewin thoroughly prepared WQ for trial based on self-defense. Attorney Lewin and WQ had two lengthy trial preparation sessions during which Attorney Lewin prepared WQ for her testimony in Court.
Attorney Lewin had advised WQ’s husband – who did not want to testify against WQ – that he had two privileges he could invoke to avoid testifying. He had a marital privilege and he had a Fifth Amendment privilege. On March 6, 2017 WQ and Attorney Lewin appeared in Lawrence District Court. The case was called in the trial session and Attorney Lewin answered that he and WQ were ready for trial. The husband was present. He told the Judge that he wished to exercise his marital privilege. The Judge then excused the husband. The District Attorney answered that they could not go forward. Attorney Lewin moved to have the case dismissed and the Judge dismissed the case against WQ. WQ and her husband left the Courthouse arm in arm!
Assault & Battery is a deportable offense. For people who are not citizens this offense can be the end of their stay in the US. As the result of the careful work and preparation of Attorney Lewin both WQ and her husband can stay in the US.