Shanghai Jim (shanghai_jim) wrote in little_details,
Shanghai Jim

Assault, arraignment, and personal previous history

When: Fall 1945
Where: Bakersfield, Kern County, California

My protagonist has just attacked and attempted to beat up the arrogant, slimy boyfriend of the girl he likes. The girl and the boyfriend had been arguing as they got out of a car and the boyfriend sort of grabbed her arm roughly. This sets my boy off. (Think Ryan Atwood from "The O.C".) He gets in a couple of good punches and maybe a knee to the gut before others intervene. The boyfriend has a bloody something (nose, lip, mouth) and hurts but is otherwise unharmed. There's a cop nearby who cites my boy for assault.

I want some bad stuff in his past--specifically, his other-than-honorable discharge from the Army, and the incident that caused it--to come out (he's been keeping it secret), because of this assault citation. Ideally I'd prefer it merely to be at his arraignment where he pleads no contest, but I don't know if an arraignment without a trial is enough of a venue for his "problem past" to come out. I don't want him to go to jail or have to evade the cops--it's not that sort of book--but I do want his co-workers and the girl to feel "omg why did you lie to us/keep this from us/i don't know you anymore!" and so forth.

Can his other-than-honorable discharge be revealed at an arraignment where he pleads no contest (or guilty), or in any way that does not involve a complete trial shebang? (I'm trying to avoid writing as much courtroom as possible. The important thing for me is to have the reveal of his past against his will, however that can happen.)

Searched: assault, misdemeanor, arraignment, guilty plea

Tags: ~law (misc)

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