For many years, Virginia state law posed a tough challenge for the defendant of domestic abuse charges. Under Fairfax Virginia laws, it is a criminal offense to injure, attempt to harm, or threaten a member of your family or household. It is also a crime to breach a protective order.
In Fairfax VA, a person commits family abuse (also known as domestic violence) by committing any act against a family or household member that involves violence, force, or threats and causes physical infliction or results in fear of harm for the family or household member. Besides, stalking in the first, second, and third-degree and sexual assault to a family member constitutes a domestic violence offense.
The (Va. Code Ann. § 16.1-228.) defines a family and household member as any of the following:
In Fairfax VA, committing an assault or battery to a family or household member is what constitutes domestic violence.
When a police officer has a probable cause to believe that a person has committed assault and battery against a family, a household member, or violated a protective order in Fairfax VA, a police officer may make an arrest. The officer may proceed with the arrest without a warrant and should, in the absence of special circumstances, take the person into custody.
Unlike the usual rule where a police officer has to obtain a warrant of arrest, this circumstance is an exception.
(Va. Code Ann. § 19.2-81.3.)
A protective order (also restrain order), is a court order that requires the defendant to stay away from or not to contact the petitioner. Here are the different types of protective orders:
In the state of Virginia, any victim of domestic violence can file a petition alleging that s/he is or has been within a period of time a subject to an act of violence force or threat. The court may then issue a preliminary protective order against the alleged perpetrator to protect the health and safety of the petitioner, any family or household member.
When the court finds family abuse, it may issue a preliminary protective order:
The preliminary is effective upon personal service of the defendant and continues to hold until the case is over. The trial must proceed within 15 days of the preliminary order unless there is a good reason to delay it for up to six months.
(Va. Code Ann. § 16.1-253.1.)
When a trial results into a conviction (whether by plea or after a trial) a judge may issue a final protective order which might:
(Va. Code Ann. § 16.1-279.1.)
Besides, any Virginia judge can issue an emergency protective order if the judge finds that there is a danger of further acts of family abuse. The victim is not required to present in court when the order is issued.
However, the emergency protective order is limited. It can only:
The emergency protective order provides temporary protection and lasts only three days in Fairfax, VA.
(Va. Code Ann. § 16.1-253.4.)
Violating the most provision of a protective order is a crime. Breaching a restraining order is also contempt of court and is punishable by time in jail or a fine.
(Va. Code Ann. § § 16.1-253.1, 16.1-279.1.)
(Va. Code Ann. § § 16.1-253.2, 18.2-10, 18.2-11, 18.2-57.2, 18.2-57.3, 18.2-60.4.)
The consequences of domestic violence allegations can be detrimental regarding your personal and family life and professional reputation. You`ll need on your side a local violence lawyer who understands criminal law and how family law proceedings can impact a domestic violence charge.
A protective order or a conviction for assault and battery on a family or household member can have severe consequences in your life. To answer numerous legal questions, contact NOVA Criminal Attorney of Jad Sarsour.
If not handled correctly, accusations of domestic violence can lead to jail time, fines, probation, restrain orders, an order of protection, the loss of child custody, exclusion from home, and even the loss of your job.