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Domestic violence; ramifications for victims and falsely accused

A recent domestic abuse incident involving a federal judge from neighboring Alabama that is alleged to have occurred late last Saturday night in a downtown Atlanta hotel spotlights intimate-partner violence that many commentators say is at troublingly high levels across the country.

The judge was arrested by the Atlanta Police Department after his wife told officers that he had physically assaulted her. He was subsequently released on a signature bond and is scheduled to attend a court hearing on the matter later this month.

The case is a sad and timely reminder of family violence, an occurrence that a long-tenured Georgia domestic violence coalition states unfolds in many forms. The Georgia Coalition Against Domestic Violence (GCADV) notes that, in addition to highly publicized incidents involving physical altercations, domestic abuse also commonly features emotional, psychological and sexual abuse, as well as economic abuse that financially disadvantages one partner in a relationship.

The GCADV notes that domestic violence is a flatly egalitarian occurrence. That is, acts of violence occur against victims from every race, ethnic group and religion and without regard to gender, sexual orientation or any other factor.

Domestic violence acts often repeat themselves and grow in intensity, making it imperative for victims to reach out promptly for help. Relevant contact sources include local advocacy shelters, medical offices, police departments and family law attorneys with experience helping victims find shelter and secure protective court orders.

Given the inherent volatility and high emotions associated with acts of domestic violence and related allegations, it is far from a singular event when a person is falsely accused of harming a partner. Persons on the receiving end of a police investigation also have a right to fundamental fairness and the impartial pursuit of truth regarding any abuse allegation.

Georgia residents with legal questions concerning domestic violence matters can obtain prompt answers from an Atlanta-based attorney with experience representing both violence victims and persons accused of domestic violence.

Source: CNN: "Federal judge jailed after alleged domestic dispute," Eliott C. McLaughlin and John Branch," Aug. 12, 2014

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