Connecticut Disorderly Conduct Restraining & Protective Orders
While a Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest may be one of the least serious domestic violence crimes in the books, they are often accompanied by stiff and strict criminal protective orders that hang over your head while your Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest is pending in Connecticut.
When police respond to a 911 emergency call and show up on the scene of a domestic violence dispute, they often just charge the least serious crime— Disorderly Conduct under CGS 53a-182—and let the domestic violence courts figure out how to resolve the case. The problem with this is that once you get to court on the next business morning to answer your Connecticut domestic violence arrest, court officers and social workers must conduct a quick and hasty risk assessment of you and your family.
As the person arrested for Disorderly Conduct, you are whisked out of the courtroom, and are pressured to sit for a one-on-one interview with a Family Relations Officer (for which you are usually unprepared). Then you are forced to stand up in court for a rushed protective / restraining order hearing where a judge decides very quickly whether you will be allowed to return home or have contact with your family.
If this sounds harsh, unfair and overwhelming, that’s because it is. And that’s why you should have a top Connecticut Disorderly Conduct criminal lawyer by your side at your first court date, which is called the “arraignment.”
The Three Types of Connecticut Protective Orders
After you report to court at 9 a.m. and finish your interview or meeting with the Family Relations Officer your case will be then be called in open court and the criminal court judge will decide what kind of protective restraining order should be issued against you while your Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest is pending. This criminal protective order (sometimes mistakenly called a “restraining order”) can last for months, or even over a year, until your Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest is nolled or dismissed.
There are three kinds of criminal protective orders in Connecticut and criminal protective orders are issued in almost every Connecticut domestic violence Disorderly Conduct arrest. The most serious is the “Full No Contact” order which prohibits any kind of contact whatsoever with the alleged victim, who is also called the “accuser” or “complainant.”
When there’s a Full No Contact order, you cannot have any kind of contact with the alleged victim, either by phone, email, texting or social media, even if it’s about your children or their health or school schedules.
The next category of protective order in Connecticut is the “Full” or “Residential Stay-Away” protective order which permits physical, verbal, and electronic contact with the accuser, but forbids you from entering the accuser’s home (even if you own the home or pay the mortgage or rent). You can be forced out of your home for weeks or months after your Connecticut domestic violence protective order hearing.
Finally, the most common protective order issued in Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrests is the “Partial” or “Limited” protective order which allows you to have unrestricted contact with your accuser, and allows you to enter their residence, but you are forbidden from assaulting, threatening, or harassing them.
This is the most ideal protective order to have in your case, but be careful: alleged victims and accusers will sometimes use these partial protective orders as swords, not shields, and will bait you into violating your protective order so that you will be arrested in Connecticut for Criminal Violation of a Protective Order, a felony charge carrying up to five years in jail
Protective Order Hearings
Before deciding what kind of protective order to issue, the criminal court judge will call you up to the podium, and then will ask court officials to state their recommendations and opinions as to what kind of criminal protective order to issue against you. The court will hear from the State’s Attorney (also known as the prosecutor), the Family Relations Officer, the Domestic Violence Victim Advocate, and the Bail Commissioner. Then the court will hear directly from the victim or his or her attorney, and you should remain poised and calm while accusations are made against you (sometimes false and biased accusations).
Finally, your attorney may have a chance to make an argument as to why the least restrictive protective order should be issued against you. It all happens very quickly, so pay attention, stay calm and composed, and do not be afraid to speak up, especially if the judge appears to be inclined to issue a strict protective order against you for your Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest.
If your Disorderly Conduct arrest involves other charges and your children were somehow involved or in the vicinity, then there’s a chance the judge may extend the protective order to limit or restrict contact with your kids, so make sure you push back or challenge the prosecutor or judge if they try to extend the order to prohibit your contact with your children. Also, if you are not happy with the results of the protective order hearing for your Disorderly Conduct arrest, then you should request a full evidentiary hearing to modify the judge’s decision
Contacting A Lawyer
As you can see, showing up alone for your Connecticut Disorderly Conduct arrest protective / restraining order hearing can lead to disastrous consequences, including being slapped with a Connecticut full no contact protective order which prohibits you from having any contact with your spouse or children. Don’t let the Connecticut domestic violence court system run you over. Get in front of your case by getting in front of a top Connecticut domestic violence lawyer attorney today.