Unintentional consequences of amendment

From WCPO News:

Some attorneys are attempting to use Ohio’s new gay marriage amendment to defend unmarried clients against domestic violence charges.

The constitutional amendment took effect on December first. It denies legal status to unmarried couples.

In at least two cases last week, the Cuyahoga County public defender’s office has asked a judge to dismiss domestic-violence charges against unmarried defendants. The attorneys in the two cases argue that the charges violate the amendment by affording marriage-like legal status to unmarried victims who live with the people accused of attacking them.

Advocates for victims of domestic violence have worried about the effect of the amendment since it passed in November. They fear defense attorneys around the state will copy the tactic used in Cuyahoga County.

Of course, the the victim could still press charges for assault even if this defense works, but it would curtail the ability of a third party, usually the state, to press charges even if the victim refuses.

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