Dallas, TX asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Texas

Q: Protective order issued then commits disaster fraud 2017 $17,000.00 while veteran contractor is unknownlly arrested on f

Police refuse to take formal complaint by victim is this legal? Criminal 8 protective order attempting to take new home by accusing victim of abuse did not happen

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1 Lawyer Answer
Michael Hamilton Rodgers
Michael Hamilton Rodgers
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Dallas, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: If you're asking if police can legally refuse to file a case based upon a person reporting that a crime has been committed, the answer is "yes". There are many reasons why the police might justifiably refuse to file criminal charges when they receive a report that someone has committed a crime. In your case it sounds like a court already has acted in this matter. You say a protective order was issued sometime in the past (2017 ?), correct? So the police may consider the "fraud" which your unnamed "victim" has reported is part of a case which is already in the judicial system and they are refusing for that reason to start another (criminal) case because in their opinion the court already involved is well-suited to look into the alleged crime.

Or they may simply see the new case as a civil matter rather than a criminal case. Civil fraud is quite common and this is may be how they see the new situation.

Or maybe they have listened to your "victim" and decided that the facts don't add up to a criminal case or even to a matter of civil fraud. In other words, they may see the reported situation as not rising to the level of a criminal fraud. In that situation, they would be correct to not file criminal charges.

Or maybe the police are just making an honest mistake by not filing criminal charges. This does happen. When an honest mistake is made, the police's refusal to act is still "legal".

So, absent some bad motive or actual criminal involvement on the part of the police themselves, they are acting perfectly legally in refusing to file charges.

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