Witness Intimidation, Assault and Battery -- Somerville District Court

Outcome: Dismissed

Description: One night Mr. V. and his wife fought. The fight turned ugly. The police arrived. Mr. V's wife told police that her husband punched her and threatened to kill her if he called the police. Mr. V was arrested and charged with assault and battery and witness intimidation. Under Massachusetts law a husband/wife cannot be compelled to testify against their spouse - that is known as the "Marital Privilege." At the second court date Mr. V's wife invoked her marital privilege. In this case, no evidence existed beyond the testimony of the wife - the police cannot testify as to what the wife told them; that is inadmissible hearsay. With no evidence remaining, the case was dismissed.