If you are accused of violating an order of protection, you can be immediately arrested and held in custody until the judge makes a decision about your release. Contact Scott David Stewart in Surprise, Arizona as soon as possible for a dedicated criminal defense attorney to provide sound legal guidance and protect your rights and freedoms.
Also known as a restraining order, an order of protection is a document issued by the court. It orders a person accused of abuse not to contact the alleged victim. Orders of protection are typically obtained to prevent a specific person from committing acts of domestic violence, harassment, or assault. They are issued by a judge based on statements made by the person seeking the order.
Once an order of protection is served on the defendant (person named in the order), it will remain in place for one year. During that year, the defendant may not contact the person who requested the order directly or indirectly. There may be other restrictions imposed, such as not going within a certain distance of the home, place of work, or school of the person. As long as conditions relate to protecting the requesting party, the judge has considerable leeway in what restrictions are imposed.
To challenge an order of protection issued by a judge, you must request a written hearing. The hearing will be held within 10 days of the date of request, or within five days if the order of protection prevents you from returning to your home. In the hearing, the judge will hear from both the defendant and the party who requested the order before deciding whether to uphold it.
A defendant who makes contact with the filing party or violates any of the provisions of the order can be charged with violating an order of protection, which is a class one misdemeanor. Penalties may include:
One defense against charges of violating an order of protection is denying that the defendant acted in violation of the order. It is not a defense the defendant made contact, as prohibited in the order, after the filing party invited the defendant into his or her home. The order was issued by the judge, not the filing party, and only the judge can lift it. As in any criminal case, we can raise defenses concerning constitutional rights violations, including:
Violating an order of protection carries serious penalties, including arrest, jail time, and heavy fines. If you have been accused this offense, call Scott David Stewart today for the dedicated legal advocacy you need. Our criminal defense attorneys have a history of success representing people who are facing criminal charges.