2006 Code of Virginia § 16.1-253.4 - Emergency protective orders authorized in certain cases; penalty

16.1-253.4. Emergency protective orders authorized in certain cases;penalty.

A. Any judge of a circuit court, general district court, juvenile anddomestic relations district court or magistrate may issue a written or oralex parte emergency protective order pursuant to this section in order toprotect the health or safety of any person.

B. When a law-enforcement officer or an allegedly abused person asserts underoath to a judge or magistrate, and on that assertion or other evidence thejudge or magistrate finds that (i) a warrant for a violation of 18.2-57.2has been issued and there is probable danger of further acts of family abuseagainst a family or household member by the respondent or (ii) reasonablegrounds exist to believe that the respondent has committed family abuse andthere is probable danger of a further such offense against a family orhousehold member by the respondent, the judge or magistrate shall issue an exparte emergency protective order, except if the respondent is a minor, anemergency protective order shall not be required, imposing one or more of thefollowing conditions on the respondent:

1. Prohibiting acts of family abuse;

2. Prohibiting such contacts by the respondent with family or householdmembers of the respondent as the judge or magistrate deems necessary toprotect the safety of such persons; and

3. Granting the family or household member possession of the premisesoccupied by the parties to the exclusion of the respondent; however, no suchgrant of possession shall affect title to any real or personal property.

C. An emergency protective order issued pursuant to this section shall expireseventy-two hours after issuance. If the expiration of the seventy-two-hourperiod occurs at a time that the court is not in session, the emergencyprotective order shall be extended until 5 p.m. of the next business day thatthe juvenile and domestic relations district court is in session. Therespondent may at any time file a motion with the court requesting a hearingto dissolve or modify the order. The hearing on the motion shall be givenprecedence on the docket of the court.

D. A law-enforcement officer may request an emergency protective orderpursuant to this section and, if the person in need of protection isphysically or mentally incapable of filing a petition pursuant to 16.1-253.1 or 16.1-279.1, may request the extension of an emergencyprotective order for an additional period of time not to exceed seventy-twohours after expiration of the original order. The request for an emergencyprotective order or extension of an order may be made orally, in person or byelectronic means, and the judge of a circuit court, general district court,or juvenile and domestic relations district court or a magistrate may issuean oral emergency protective order. An oral emergency protective order issuedpursuant to this section shall be reduced to writing, by the law-enforcementofficer requesting the order or the magistrate on a preprinted form approvedand provided by the Supreme Court of Virginia. The completed form shallinclude a statement of the grounds for the order asserted by the officer orthe allegedly abused person.

E. Upon receipt of the order by a local law-enforcement agency for service,the agency shall enter the name of the person subject to the order and otherappropriate information required by the Department of State Police into theVirginia Criminal Information Network system established and maintained bythe Department pursuant to Chapter 2 ( 52-12 et seq.) of Title 52. Wherepractical, the court or magistrate may transfer information electronically tothe Virginia Criminal Information Network system. A copy of an emergencyprotective order issued pursuant to this section shall be served upon therespondent as soon as possible, and upon service, the agency making serviceshall enter the date and time of service into the Virginia CriminalInformation Network system. One copy of the order shall be given to theallegedly abused person when it is issued, and one copy shall be filed withthe written report required by 19.2-81.3 C. The judge or magistrate whoissues an oral order pursuant to an electronic request by a law-enforcementofficer shall verify the written order to determine whether the officer whoreduced it to writing accurately transcribed the contents of the oral order.The original copy shall be filed with the clerk of the juvenile and domesticrelations district court within five business days of the issuance of theorder. If the order is later dissolved or modified, a copy of the dissolutionor modification order shall be forwarded and entered in the system asdescribed above. Upon request, the clerk shall provide the allegedly abusedperson with information regarding the date and time of service.

F. The availability of an emergency protective order shall not be affected bythe fact that the family or household member left the premises to avoid thedanger of family abuse by the respondent.

G. The issuance of an emergency protective order shall not be consideredevidence of any wrongdoing by the respondent.

H. As used in this section, a "law-enforcement officer" means any (i)full-time or part-time employee of a police department or sheriff's officewhich is part of or administered by the Commonwealth or any politicalsubdivision thereof and who is responsible for the prevention and detectionof crime and the enforcement of the penal, traffic or highway laws of theCommonwealth and (ii) member of an auxiliary police force establishedpursuant to subsection B of 15.2-1731. Part-time employees are compensatedofficers who are not full-time employees as defined by the employing policedepartment or sheriff's office.

I. Neither a law-enforcement agency, the attorney for the Commonwealth, acourt nor the clerk's office, nor any employee of them, may disclose, exceptamong themselves, the residential address, telephone number, or place ofemployment of the person protected by the order or that of the family of suchperson, except to the extent that disclosure is (i) required by law or theRules of the Supreme Court, (ii) necessary for law-enforcement purposes, or(iii) permitted by the court for good cause.

J. As used in this section, "copy" includes a facsimile copy.

K. No fee shall be charged for filing or serving any petition or orderpursuant to this section.

(1991, c. 715; 1992, c. 742; 1994, c. 907; 1996, c. 866; 1997, c. 603; 1998,cc. 677, 684; 1999, c. 807; 2001, c. 474; 2002, cc. 508, 706, 810, 818.)

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