CW secures dismissal for individual charged with two felonies

December 2023

CW’s client, a California woman in her 80s, had endured decades of brutal verbal and emotional abuse at the hands of her husband. One morning in 2021, she called 911 to report a violent physical incident. When the police arrived, however, a dire miscommunication occurred. They arrested our client, rather than her husband, and charged her with two felonies: elder abuse and domestic violence. These charges completely upended our client’s safety, well-being, and reputation. While CW attempted to have them dismissed, citing a documented history of spousal abuse, the district attorney’s office continued to insist on her guilt. Finally, when all other avenues to relief had been exhausted, CW petitioned the court to grant a mental health diversion, which allows criminal defendants in California to undergo mental health treatment in lieu of prosecution. Six months after enrolling in the program, the court dismissed all charges against CW’s client.