A protective order is designed to keep an alleged offender from a particular location or particular person when a court believes that an instance of family violence has occurred and is likely to occur in the future. Protective orders are routinely applied for anytime police officers are called to the scene of an alleged domestic or family violence offense. Often the alleged victim of a family violence offense does not even request a protective order. Police officers will seek a protective order on behalf of an alleged victim if they believe the facts warrant such an order. A violation of a protective order can result in criminal prosecution in Texas. Typically a violation of a protective order is a misdemeanor offense in Texas.
The problem with alleged violation of protective order cases is that a person can find themselves in court despite the subject of the protective order having zero or no interest in prosecution. Additionally these cases are technical offenses much like a failing to wear a seat belt. The prosecution can base a criminal prosecution based solely on the testimony of an alleged victim. They are simply trying to prove to things – 1. Is there a valid protective order in place, and 2. Did this individual fail to abide by such order? Repeated violations of a protective order can rise to the level of a third degree felony in Texas depending on the circumstances and the facts of a case.
Attorney for Violation of Protective Order Arrests in Fort Worth, TX
If you were arrested in the DFW area for an alleged violation of a protective order, it is in your best interest to not say anything to authorities until you have legal counsel. Contact Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC as soon as possible.
Fort Worth criminal defense lawyers Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC represent clients accused of various types of family violence in Weatherford, Fort Worth, Cleburne, Arlington, or any one of a number of other communities in Tarrant County, Parker County, and Johnson County. You can have our attorneys review your case Call (817) 502-3600 today to have our lawyers provide a complete evaluation of your case during a free initial consultation.
Violation of a Protective Order Penalties in Texas
Texas Penal Code § 25.07 provides that a person commits an offense if, in violation of bond set in a family violence, sexual assault or abuse, stalking, or trafficking case related to the safety of the victim or the safety of the community, an order issued under Chapter 7A, of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, an order issued under 17.292 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, an order issued under the Section 6.504, Family Code, Chapter 83, Family Code, if the temporary ex parte order has been served on the person, of Chapter 85, Family Code, or an order issued by another jurisdiction as provided by Chapter 88, Family Code, the person knowingly or intentionally:
- Commits family violence or an act in furtherance of an offense under Section 20A.02 (trafficking of persons), 22.011 (sexual assault), 22.021 (aggravated sexual assault), or 42.072 (stalking);
- Directly with a protected individual or a member of the family or household in a threatening or harassing manner;
- A threat through any person to a protected individual or a member of the family or household; or
- In any manner with the protected individual or a member of the family or household except through the person’s attorney or a person appointed by the court, if the violation is of an order described by this subsection and the order prohibits any communication with a protected individual or a member of the family or household;
- Goes to or near any of the following places as specifically described in the order or condition of bond:
- The residence or place of employment or business of a protected individual or a member of the family or household; or
- Any child care facility, residence, or school where a child protected by the order of condition of bond normally resides or attends;
- Possesses a firearm;
- Harms, threatens, or interferes with the care, custody, or control of a pet, companion animal, or assistance animal that is possessed by a person protected by the order or condition of bond; or
- Removes, attempts to remove, or otherwise tampers with the normal functioning of a global positioning monitoring system.
An offense as described above is a Class A misdemeanor in Texas. A person charged with a violation of a protective order under this section could face up to one year in jail and up to a $4000 fine. If it is shown on the trial of the offense that an individual has previously been convicted two or more times of violation of a protective order under this section or violated the protective order or the condition of bond by committing a new assault or stalking, the penalties are increased to a third-degree felony for which a person could be sentenced up to ten years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
Texas Protective Order Resources
Safe Haven – Safe Haven is the largest agency in Tarrant County that provides services to alleged domestic violence victims. In the vast majority of violation of protective order cases, the alleged offender and victim have some form of a relationship. The issuance of a protective order in regard to a complete stranger is quite rare. Tarrant County along with other surrounding counties take these cases very seriously. When an alleged victim wishes to “drop” charges or make their intentions known to the District Attorney’s office they will often be referred to take the Alternatives class through Safe Haven. Safe Haven offers this program at no cost to an alleged victim of domestic violence.
Protective Orders – Tarrant County – Once a protective order is issued it will be in place until the expiration of the order. Generally a protective order can be valid for up to two (2) years. Reconciliatory actions or subsequent agreements made by the two parties involved in a protective order do not affect the validity of the order. If an alleged victim or the person who is the subject of the protective order changes their mind or wishes to have contact with an individual they can’t until the protective order has expired. Protective orders can be modified and even terminated with the assistance of an experienced criminal defense lawyer. To find out more about protective orders as it relates to Tarrant County or to find contact information for the District Attorney’s office with regard to a protective order click the link above.
Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC | Fort Worth Violation of Protective Order Defense Lawyer
Were you arrested for an alleged violation of a protective order in the DFW area? Even if you are completely confident that you are innocent, you should not make any kind of statement to authorities until you have contacted Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC.
Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC are criminal defense attorneys in Fort Worth who aggressively defend individuals accused of all kinds of domestic violence crimes in communities throughout Tarrant County, Parker County, and Johnson County, including Arlington, Weatherford, Fort Worth, Cleburne, and several others. Call (817) 502-3600 or complete an online form to have our lawyers provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.