VIOLATION OF an INJUNCTION
In Florida, the State offers legal options through both the criminal and civil court systems for domestic violence related incidents. Residents can request injunctions, also known as restraining orders. An Injunction in Florida is a court order that prohibits a person from having contact with another person.
Under Florida Statute 741.30:
“Any person described in paragraph (e), who is either the victim of domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28 or has reasonable cause to believe he or she is in imminent danger of becoming the victim of any act of domestic violence, has standing in the circuit court to file a sworn petition for an injunction for protection against domestic violence.”
TYPES OF INJUNCTIONS
• “Domestic Violence” means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member. FS 741.28.
Dating Violence (FS 784.046(1)(d))
• Dating Violence means violence for individuals who have or have had a continuing significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature.
To determine if such relationship existed the courts consider the following:
A dating relationship must have existed within the past 6 months
The nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties
The frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship
Sexual Violence (FS 784.046(1)(c))
• Sexual Violence means sexual battery, a lewd or lascivious act, luring or enticing a child, sexual performance by a child, or any other forcible felony wherein a sexual act is committed or attempted
A petition for sexual violence does not require that criminal charges be filed. In fact, a petition can be granted if even criminal charges were reduced or dismissed.
Repeat Violence (FS 784.046(1)(b))
2 incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, one of which must have been within 6 months of the filing of the petition, which are directed against the petitioner or the petitioner’s immediate family member.
Stalking and Cyberstalking
Cyberstalking means to engage in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose.
If an injunction is granted against you, you will not be able to own a firearm during the lifetime of the injunction and you must stay away from the other person’s home, vehicle, and place of employment.
If you violate an injunction, it is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by:
1 year in jail; or
There can be a required minimum amount of jail depending on the facts
1 year of probation; and
A felony may be charged under certain circumstances if there are multiple violations.