August 1, 2019
Restraining order violations stick!
Did you know that the criminal charge “violation of a no-contact order VNCO” sticks even if the restraining order is temporary, or is terminated before the criminal case is resolved?
A lot of people believe that any violations of restraining orders will go away as long as the temporary restraining order is terminated; this isn’t true!
Once you are served with a restraining order, it is in effect. If the order tells you not to go a certain place, and/or not to contact the protected party, you risk criminal citation if you do it anyway.
The protected party is NOT restrained by their own restraining order. If a restrained party may not go to the protected party’s home, and/or may not contact him/her, this has no effect on the protected party’s actions. S/he can text you, call you, or show up to your house, and s/he is NOT violating their own restraining order. (We would argue they may not need protection if they won’t leave you alone, though!)
Here is what we see happen regularly: Wife gets a restraining (no contact) order against Husband and he is served with the order. A week later Wife texts husband and asks him to come over; husband believes he has permission. A fight breaks out at the family home and the police are called; Husband gets arrested for violating the no-contact order. Two weeks later, Wife’s no-contact order is terminated in family court; Husband’s criminal VNCO is still pending.
Husband is going to have a hard time fighting this charge, as the evidence tends to prove he knowingly went to a location, and spoke to a person, he wasn’t supposed to, after having been served with the no-contact order.
Read your order and respect it. No judge will have any sympathy for you if you knowingly violate the terms of your order.