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Local News

September 20, 2013

Ins and outs of protection orders

(Continued)

If other people help you violate the order, such as giving messages to the protected party, they can be arrested, too.

It is a mandatory arrest for the police if a defendant is with the victim or at her or his residence in violation of a “stay away” order of protection. The police will enforce the order even if it is claimed that the other person invited the defendant. 

The victim/protected party cannot be arrested for violating the order.

‘REFRAIN FROM’ ORDERS

If the order tells you to REFRAIN FROM certain behaviors, that means you can have contact but are prohibited from harassing, intimidating, threatening or otherwise committing a crime against the person protected by the order.

Be aware that even a misdemeanor conviction in a domestic violence case can affect your right to have a firearm. 

This is an enormous consequence if you are in law enforcement and carrying a weapon is required for your employment; you may lose your job. 

Violating an order of protection on top of that, even if it is to plead with the victim to drop the charge, will cause you more problems.

AVOID PROBLEMS

How defendants can avoid problems when there is a stay away order:

▶ Do not assume that you are safe if the victim invites you or contacts you first.

▶ Do not go to places where you know the other person may be. If you realize the person is in the same location, you must leave immediately.

▶ Hang up the phone if the protected person calls you. Record the call, if possible, and tell your lawyer about it.

▶ Do not send letters, emails, texts or other messages to the protected person, and do not respond if that person sends one to you. Give your lawyer any message you receive.

▶ Do not get into arguments with the person’s family or friends.

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