Woman drops domestic violence complaint against husband: ‘I don’t want to be cruel’

Woman withdraws complaint against husband for holding penknife to her kneck

A woman who suffered slight injuries when her intoxicated husband held a penknife to her chin during an argument, withdrew her complaint when the man was arraigned in court this morning, resulting in the case being dropped.

The court was also unable to impose a restraining order or other protective measures as a result.

The scene is an oft-repeated one in domestic violence cases, where victims in abusive or violent relationships, for a variety of reasons, change their minds about pursuing criminal proceedings when their partner is charged.

Inspector Omar Zammit arraigned the 55-year-old man from Qormi before Magistrate Victor Axiak on Thursday, on domestic violence and slight bodily harm charges.

The woman had gone to the police when her husband had come home drunk and held a penknife to her neck, nicking her chin, the inspector explained.

But defence lawyer Nicholas Mifsud told the court that he was informed that the victim did not want to proceed with the case. The woman was called to the witness stand.

“When he’s sober he’s a man a hundred times over, but when he drinks he becomes a different person…I’m a bit scared of him. But I don’t want him to go to prison,” she said.

She wanted the defendant to live somewhere else, said the woman. “I don’t want to be cruel to him and send him to prison, but this thing with him getting drunk every night… I can’t carry on like this.”

The woman continued to insist on dropping the criminal complaint, even after the magistrate pointed out that if she did so, the court would not be able to impose protective measures.

The court was also told that the defendant would be leaving the matrimonial home with immediate effect.

After consulting with the law, the court declared the proceedings to be extinct.

Lawyer Nicholas Mifsud was defence counsel, while lawyer Mario Mifsud appeared for the victim.