In 2012, pro football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders and his wife, Pilar Sanders, made headlines after police responded to a domestic violence call at their home. Shortly thereafter, Deion took to Twitter to proclaim his dismay, saying, “Pray for me and my kids now! They just witnessed their mother and a friend jump me in my room.”
As Deion continued tweeting, reports surfaced that the allegations that Pilar attacked Deion were a setup. This all too common ploy has enabled many abusive husbands or wives to restructure domestic violence laws into another weapon of abuse. The setup allows the abusers to demonstrate a pattern of violent conduct on a spouse’s part and to use this evidence in a divorce or child custody battle. Although the court ultimately decides the truth of any domestic violence allegation, the fact remains that such allegations have devastating consequences, including criminal records, litigation expenses and prolonged custody battles.
Another tactic used in divorce proceedings is the stall and delay. Here’s how it works: Court hearings are continually rescheduled, frivolous motions are filed and requests for discovery are repeatedly made. These tactics drive up legal costs and protract the litigation process. The incentive underlying this tactic is to force the opposing party, by increasing expenses and time, into a settlement offer.
Another tactic, frequently used by celebrities, is known as “conflicting out.” This is when one party contacts all the ...