Many times people will call the police regarding the actions of there son or daughter. Many times they just need help with a bad situation. However, the police getting involved in your life can be very problematic. And could cause you to have to testify against your son or daughter, even when you dont want to.
If you are in a situation the best thing to do is to consult an Attorney as soon as possible. As a crimnal defense attorney with more than 14 years of criminal defense experience I know the ins and outs of the system.
The short answer to your question is yes you could depending on the circumstances be ordered to give testimony. You can offer to the court that you have a 5th amendment right against incrimination and if the court finds that you have legitimate 5th amendment right then everything stops there. For example the facts in the police report were false or you made a false police report.
Now if the court decides that you do not have a legitimate 5th amendment right, the Judge will order you to testify.
THE QUESTION BECOMES CAN I GO TO JAIL IF I REFUSE TO TESTIFY AND I AM HELD IN CONTEMPT
The question can be a little tricky but the answer most of the time is that you can be held in contempt, for failure to testify, but no you cant be put in jail. The reason is that the Code of Civil Procedure under section 1219, is you have been the victim of sexual assualt, domestic violence, or severl other crimes committed by family members than you cannot be jailed for failure to testify against the perpertrator. of the domestic violence. So in other words the domestic violence victim cannot be jailed for failure to testify agains the perpetrator. This included domestic violence situations.
WHAT DOES THE COURT MEAN BY “DOMESTIC VIOLENCE”
“Domestic Violence” means domestic violence as defined in section 6211 of the Family Code.
Family Code section 6211 provides:
“Domestic Violence is abuse perpetrated against any of the following persons:
A. a spouse or former spouse
b. a cohabitant or former co-habitant
c. A person whom the respondent has had a child, where the presumption applies that the male parentage is the father of the child under uniform parentage act.
or under section E any other person related by consanguinity or affinity within the second degree.
WHAT CONSANGUITY MEANS
The blacks law dictionary states it is a blood or kinship relationship; the connection or relation, this would include parents, and possibly other lineal descendants. Thefefore, if you were a parent and you were the victim and you refused to testify then you would not be subject to jail time.
You still could be held in contempt and have other liabilities. As you can see this is a complex area of the law and you need very case specific information so give us a call if you have questions 559-441-1418.