A new law, the Dating Violence Protection Act, went into effect this past May in Utah. The law doesn’t pertain to a marriage relationship; it involves a protective order for someone who is involved in alleged dating violence.
Dating and Protective Orders
The law describes dating violence as any criminal offense involving physical harm or violence or the threat of either against the dating partner of the individual committing the offense. A person is entitled to seek a protective order if he or she is subjected to or there is a strong likelihood that he or she will be subjected to abuse or dating violence.
Once a protective order is in place, a police officer has the authority to arrest a person if he has probable cause that the protective order was violated. He doesn’t need to have a warrant, and the alleged violence doesn’t have to have occurred in the officer’s presence.
Possible Consequences for Violating a Protective Order
Violating a protective order under this act is a class B misdemeanor. If a person is found guilty of committing this offense, he or she could potentially spend up to six months in jail. Over 50 protective orders have been granted in Utah since this law went into effect.
Don’t waste any time contacting a Utah criminal defense attorney if you are charged with violating a protective order under this or another law. Many cases involve a lot of “he said” and “she said”; you need to protect yourself if you’re being accused of any crime. Help yourself by calling a Utah criminal defense attorney today.