She may have gotten her start as an actress in the popular 1990s movie “Clueless,” but in more recent years, Stacey Dash has been known more for her vocal conservative position. She briefly worked for Fox News as a contributor and was a harsh critic of President Barack Obama. Her Twitter bio reads, “Christian, Wife, Mother, Warrior,” followed by a Make America Great Again hashtag.
On Sunday, September 29, 2019, Dash was arrested by Pasco County, Florida sheriff deputies after she called 911 to report that her fourth husband, Jeffrey Marty, had put her in a chokehold after she had argued with his teenaged daughter.
When the deputies arrived at Dash's home, it was her husband who had scratches on his arm. Sources report Dash had slapped, scratched, and pushed Marty. He did not want to press charges, but just like in Washington, Florida authorities are obliged to make an arrest after being called to a domestic violence incident and because Marty had the visible marks of an altercation on his body, Dash was the one taken into custody.
Dash was arrested and taken to the Land O' Lakes detention facility. She was held on a $500 bail until the next day when Marty bailed her out and took her home. A representative for Dash released a statement regarding the incident: “Ms. Dash's husband appeared in court today, September 30th, on her behalf and Ms. Dash was released from the Land O' Lakes detention facility. No further legal action is pending. The marital dispute, while personal and unfortunate, has since been blown out of proportion.”
Washington Law and Potential Bias
In the Dash case, it is interesting to note that Dash is the one who called 911, yet she is the one the deputies arrested. Washington has a specific law that requires law enforcement to make an arrest (even if they don't have a warrant) when they are called to a domestic violence situation.
(6)(a) When a peace officer responds to a domestic violence call and has probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed, the peace officer shall exercise arrest powers with reference to the criteria in RCW 10.31.100. The officer shall notify the victim of the victim's right to initiate a criminal proceeding in all cases where the officer has not exercised arrest powers or decided to initiate criminal proceedings by citation or otherwise. The parties in such cases shall also be advised of the importance of preserving evidence.
Even though this law was designed to protect alleged victims involved in a potential domestic violence situation, the phrasing “has probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed” leaves a lot of room for bias. What if, in the Dash incident, Marty had scratched his arms while trimming trees earlier in the day? This is a perfect example of why domestic violence incidents are not always so black and white.
Seattle Domestic Violence Attorney
Just because you may have been accused or even charged with domestic violence, you are innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. If you or a loved one are facing domestic violence charges, Steve Karimi is a former prosecutor who knows Washington domestic violence law and will fight to defend your rights. Contact the Law Offices of Steve Karimi at (206) 621-8777 today for a free consultation, or fill out an online form.