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I Was Defending Myself But Was Charged with Domestic Violence in Indiana. Can I Claim Self-Defense?

Fleeing is not always an option when a spouse, romantic partner, roommate, or family member turns violent. Self-defense is not just a legal defense in Indiana—it may be someone’s only option when they find themself the target of another’s rage.

Yet, you may still be charged with domestic violence despite defending yourself within your legal rights. If a prosecutor decides to charge you, your lawyer’s mission becomes casting doubt on the allegations against you. We may make the case that you restrained or subdued the other party merely to protect yourself.

Indiana Self-Defense Laws Apply to Domestic Disputes

IC 35-41-3-2 governs the “Use of force to protect person or property.” The statute leaves no doubt that you can protect yourself from others’ physical assaults, stating that “people have a right to defend themselves and third parties from physical harm and crime.”

The statute also condones Indianans who:

  • Use “reasonable force” in protecting themselves or third parties from physical harm
  • Choose not to retreat when someone engages in physical violence against them or a third party (including in domestic circumstances)

There are several caveats and substantial fine print within this statute, but the overarching theme is clear: If someone physically assaults you or threatens imminent unlawful violence, you are within your rights to defend yourself in a reasonable manner. 

Self-Defense Is Not the Right Defense in Every Domestic Violence Case

While self-defense is a credible criminal defense to domestic violence charges in Indiana, it is one of many potential defenses—and may not necessarily be the right defense for your case.

When you claim self-defense, you generally admit to engaging in some degree of physical contact. Therefore, in cases where there is little to no evidence that you struck, restrained, or otherwise contacted the person you’re accused of contacting, self-defense may not be a wise defense. Instead, your attorney may simply argue that allegations of physical violence are completely baseless.

Call Razumich & Associates Today for a Nuanced, Professional Defense of Domestic Violence Charges

We don’t believe in a one-defense-fits-all approach when handling clients’ domestic violence cases in Indiana. The Razumich & Associates team will weigh the unique details of your case. We will deploy a defense that protects you from unnecessary admissions of guilt and works toward a dismissal or not-guilty verdict.

Whether or not self-defense is the right defense for you, Razumich & Associates will fight for the best possible legal outcome in your case. Call our team today at 317-449-8661 or contact us online.

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