Not-So-Thinly Veiled Threats
Those of us in the legal profession know all too well that domestic violence is not to be taken lightly. During the process of a divorce, the mental anguish and emotional torment can ratchet up feelings of anger and resentment that can sometimes boil over into violence.
Domestic violence doesn’t look the same in every relationship. It can range from behavior like maxing out a partner’s credit cards to harming a family pet. But it almost always has to do with the abuser attempting to assert control over the victim.
According to the State of California, domestic violence is any abuse perpetrated against a:
- Spouse or ex-spouse
- Cohabitant (a person who resides in the same house) or former cohabitant
- Current or former romantic partner
- Child of any of the above
- Relative by marriage
Abuse is defined as attempting to cause bodily injury, sexually assaulting, or physically intimidating the victim. It can include molesting, attacking, striking, stalking, threatening, impersonating, harassing, telephoning, destroying personal property, contacting, coming within a specified distance of, or disturbing the peace of the other person. Threatening the victim’s family members would also count as domestic violence. (California Family Code Division 10 Part 1 6200-6219)
If you have ever been threatened by a former romantic partner, you may have dismissed it as a rare occurrence. Unfortunately, some people overlook these seemingly harmless threats until it’s too late. If you suspect that your spouse may physically harm you, contact the police and a San Diego domestic violence attorney right away.
The police can request an emergency protective order (EPO) if you are in immediate danger. Judges in California are required to be available 24 hours a day in order to issue an EPO, which goes into effect immediately. It remains active for one week, and if the abuser lives in the home with you, they may be removed for the duration of the EPO.
Ex parte orders like an EPO are temporary, and if you need your restraining order extended, you will have to undergo a hearing in San Diego family court. Once you get a protective order put into place, it can:
- Prohibit your ex from abusing a named person, whether you or a family member
- Remove your ex from a named dwelling or residence
- Prohibit your ex from performing specific behavior(s)
If you or someone you love is in possible danger of violence at the hand of a spouse, it’s a good idea to contact a lawyer experienced in domestic issues, if only to get answers to your frequently asked questions and develop a potential plan of action. Our office handles the filing of Temporary Restraining Orders (TROs) and Domestic Violence Restraining Orders (DVROs). Call Huguenor Mattis, A.P.C., at (858) 458-9500 and set up a consultation today.