There are several conditions of a no-contact order in Bucks County domestic violence cases, that a judge can impose on a person. Many times a judge will grant a protective order if they feel like the person is a threat to the other parties involved in a domestic violence situation. In Bucks County, as a condition of an individual being arrested and/or alleged to have caused the crime, a judge - usually a magisterial district court judge - can set certain conditions upon a person’s release. The most common condition is that a no contact or stay away order be put in place so that the parties involved in a particular incident even before a judge or jury decide on innocence or guilt can be separated from one another.
In an assault type of case, they may issue a stay-away order while the matter continues through the court system. This means the accused is to stay away from a particular individual who at least at the time is making an allegation against them. This is to protect society from further crimes and in some ways to protect the alleged defendant or accused from being re-tried and/or recharged with any sort of intimidation of a witness type of case. A person who is the subject of the no-contact order should consult with a Bucks County lawyer right away.
Depending on the specifications of a particular stay away order, a magisterial justice or a Court of Common Pleas judge can impose certain conditions specific to a particular set of facts that have occurred. The most common include a no contact between the accused and the complainant in a particular case. This also includes anyone that knows the accused or intends to reach out to contact to the complainant in a particular case. Additionally, when such conditions are placed upon a stay away order, individuals can be arrested for violating such order.
Courts under these circumstances can protect the victims from crimes while at the same time protect defendants from being charged with additional crimes such as retaliation or intimidation of a witness. Amongst the most extreme conditions stay away orders that include reaching out to others and social media.
When dealing with others in social media, a condition is often put into place that no contact should be made physically and/or through social media or any other form of contact. General contact through phones is not admissible, texting is not admissible, and any form of contact or intimidation through a social media website in order to prevent an individual from prosecuting a case can even be charged with felony 1 retaliation against the witness.
Should specific conditions be placed upon a person’s stay away order with charges still pending through the system and if this stay away from is violated, the court that placed the stay away order can bring the individual as well as the defendant into court to face contempt of court charges. Contempt of court charges can carry jail time and as much five months and 29 days, incarceration per act.
Additionally, should the contact reach the level of retaliation against the witness or intimidating a witness, that individual can be charged as high as a felony of the first degree and can face as much as 10 to 20 years incarceration for violating such order. Courts take to stay away orders very seriously and if a person violates the conditions of a no-contact order in Bucks County domestic violence cases, it can have a severe impact on their ongoing domestic violence defense case.
They are put in place to both protect the complainant in cases as well as the defendant’s charge in cases. When individuals on either side violate the terms, they are subject to severe sanctions, fines, and long periods of incarceration in Bucks County.
It is important to abide by all conditions of a stay away order especially when criminal charges are filed in relation to a domestic violence watch. Should a court decide that a stay away order has been violated, the courts already have the power of contempt as well as new charges being filed that could place a person’s liberty in jeopardy and cause them thousands of dollars of court costs and fines.
Additionally, when protective orders come into play and parties do not abide by such stay away orders, especially in domestic violence type of cases, more extreme orders are then put into place and additional charges come due to the defendant or the party violating the stay-away order. It is essential that individuals speak with an experienced attorney during any domestic violence case, especially if they are the subject of a no-contact order.
David Clark Attorney at Law