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Do you know a woman who is being abused? A legal rights handbook

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What is my role if the police charge my partner?

Once the police charge your partner with a crime, a court date will be set. There might be many court dates before your partner's matter is resolved or goes to trial. You do not usually have to go to these court dates before trial. If you do need to go, you will be given a subpoena.

Subpoena: a document that orders you to go to court on a specific date.

If the case goes to trial, you will be given a subpoena and you will have to appear as a witness. You will not have to prove that your partner abused you. That is the job of the Crown Attorney, who will decide how to proceed with the charges.

Crown Attorney: a government lawyer who presents the case against the person accused of a crime in criminal court. They work for the government and are not the victim's lawyer.

If your partner threatens you to try to make you drop the charges, you should tell the police. Your partner might be charged with another offence, such as:

  • failing to comply with the conditions of his release,
  • obstructing justice,
  • uttering threats, or
  • making indecent or harassing phone calls.