Stamford Protective Order Violations
If you are subject to a Stamford protective order, violations can carry serious criminal penalties. For legal advice and help crafting a defense against domestic violence charges, contact a top Stamford Protective Order attorney today.
What are the Types of Protective Orders in CT?
Protective orders can be divided into two main types—criminal and civil. Courts issue criminal protective orders while the criminal investigation and trial process are underway, Connecticut General Statutes (“C.G.S.”) §36b-38c(e), § 54-1k. Generally, these orders only last until the criminal case is disposed of. However, the court has discretion to issue what is known as a standing criminal protective order, under C.G.S. §53a-40e. These orders outlive the criminal case, by potentially years or even decades.
Civil protective orders are issued at the request of an individual who has either been subjected to abuse or has been repeatedly stalked or threatened. Courts may issue a “relief from abuse” restraining order when someone has been threatened by a family or household member (C.G.S. §46b-15). A civil protection order may be issued against anyone, regardless of their relationship, but it is only available to individuals victimized by sexual abuse, sexual assault, or stalking (C.G.S. §46b-16a(a)).
Protective order violations in Stamford are treated virtually the same way regardless of how the order was issued or the terms of the order. Any violation is a serious criminal offense.
What Constitutes a Violation of a Protective Order?
Protective orders have varying levels of protection including full no contact orders, residential stay-aways, and limited protective orders. Depending on the scope of your order, even calling the protected party may constitute a violation.
One important factor to understand regarding Stamford protective order violations is that this crime requires no element of intent. This means you could be convicted of violating a protective order in Stamford even if the violation was entirely accidental. For instance, a social media post shared with all contacts or dialing the wrong number on a phone could constitute a violation.
What are the Penalties for Violations of Protective Orders?
Although the penalties are nearly identical for different types of Stamford protective order violations, these criminal violations are explained in separate statutes as follows:
- Criminal protective order – G.S. §53a-223
- Standing protective order – C.G.S. §53a-223a
- Restraining order – C.G.S. §53a-223b
- Civil protection order – C.G.S. §53a-223c
Generally, violating a protective order is a Class D felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison, a fine of up to $5,000.00, and/or a period of up to 3 years probation. If the violation involves restraint, harassment, assault, molestation or threats, the violation is a Class C felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, a fine of up to $10,000.00 and/or a period of up to 5 years probation. This applies to all orders except civil protection orders, which are always Class D felonies.
Reach Out to a Stamford Protective Order Attorney
Stamford protective order violations should be taken as seriously as any other felony charges. Those accused of a violation should consider consulting with a knowledgeable Protective Order attorney at Mark Sherman Law as soon as possible.