Oakland Restraining Order Violation Lawyer
If you are found to be in violation of a restraining order, you could be looking at jail time, a significant fine, and potentially criminal charges. Even if the protected party only files for contempt of a court order in restraining order court and you were not previously arrested, testimony at the hearing could include an accusation of a crime that could lead to an investigation by the police and a charge by the district attorney’s office.
Anyone who has been accused of violating a restraining order should contact an attorney who is knowledgeable about not only these types of cases, but criminal law as well, as these are evidentiary hearings where people are allowed to present evidence to the court, file written motions, and call witnesses. An Oakland restraining order violation lawyer who is experienced in that system could help you build the best defense you possibly can.
How Can Someone Violate a Restraining Order?
If someone is accused of violating a restraining order in Oakland, under California law, he or she can only be charged if they know that they have a restraining order against them. If they were not properly served with notice of the restraining order, they might not have known they were not allowed to have contact with the person.
If someone commits an intentional and knowing violation of a protective order, they can be charged with a misdemeanor and may face a fine of up to $1,000 and a jail sentence of up to a year. Any interaction at all could violate a restraining order if the restrained party is not allowed to have contact with the protected person.
Additionally, if there is something more harmful involved, such as an assault, the restrained party may have both violated the order and committed a crime. If he or she is convicted of both, they could be looking at penalties under both charges, but at best, physical harm in violation of a restraining order requires a mandatory minimum of 30 days in jail.
Over time, the protected party may file for another restraining order and request that it remain in place for a longer period. Any violations of the previous order would likely be used to claim that the restrained party cannot be trusted to obey the order, so a protected person may be more likely to get a longer restraining order granted. Representation from an Oakland restraining order violation attorney could be critical to mitigating these kinds of consequences.
Evidence to Demonstrate a Violation
If the restrained party has been accused of contacting the protected individual, the person who is accused of violating the order may be able to demonstrate that he or she was somewhere else at the time, or did not have any contact. This could be shown through cell phone records, photographs or videos, social media posts, witness statements from people he or she was with at the time, or documentation like receipts and ticket stubs showing they were somewhere else.
If the restraining party and the protected party could have some interaction, the protected party may be claiming that the behavior of the restrained party crossed the line of “peaceful contact” and constituted a violation. In this case, an Oakland protective order violation attorney’s priority might be able to show that the interaction did not happen the way the protected party is claiming.
Contact an Oakland Restraining Order Violation Attorney
Disclosure or testimony that happens under oath could potentially hurt you. A restrained party who finds themselves in court over a violation may accidentally make admissions to things they did not realize were hurtful because they do not have the experience or knowledge to see the bigger legal picture.
It is important for you to have advice, counsel, and preparation, so you are not stuck with fines, jail time, or additional charges down the road. Get in touch with an Oakland restraining order violation lawyer today to discuss your legal options.