In an ideal world, a restraining order would serve only to protect an innocent party from a former partner’s acts of abuse. However, the court system is designed to look out for the rights of women and often allow an accuser to manipulate the law in service of their own agenda. Police are trained to act upon any reported violation of a protective order and will assume the guilt of the accused, despite the legal premise of innocent until proven guilty. To protect the safety and welfare of the alleged “victim,” courts will often disregard the rights of the accused. The post focuses on restraining order abuse and how you can protect yourself from it.
Types of Restraining Order Abuse
One common act of restraining order abuse is the blatantly false allegation. This is when the holder asserts a violation has occurred even in the presence of evidence that the accused was in a different location at the time. An allegation will lead to a full arrest, despite the presence of a solid alibi or other evidence that the alleged made no attempt to approach the accuser.
Another type of manipulation is called the ‘house of cards.’ This occurs when a “victim” will apply for an ex-parte order, make a false allegation of an order violation, only to use that said violation as evidence to prove an official order is necessary. Contrary to our understanding of legal ethics and due process, a judge will usually deem the order valid if the accused cannot irrefutably prove his innocence.
Even bolder acts include approaching the accused at his place of work or other places he is known to spend time. A woman might orchestrate a “chance” encounter with the accused just in time to contact the police to report a violation. Savvy accusers will use any information they can to create a situation of entrapment, including phone calls with children, social media updates, or information from a third party. Sadly, an accuser often needs no evidence to support her claims and is often rewarded for these manipulation tactics in court.
Your Best Course of Legal Action
The minute you are notified of a restraining order, consult an experienced criminal attorney to prepare you for the potential onslaught of legal abuse. One valuable measure of defense is to file a reciprocating order against the plaintiff. This will protect you from their entrapment measures and give you the peace of mind to go about your day-to-day life as usual. Also, an experienced legal representative can find witnesses to corroborate your innocence or attest to the dishonest character of the plaintiff. A good attorney will also coach you on how to protect yourself against the possible entrapment measures of the accuser, keeping your slate clean before your court appearance.
When it comes to restraining orders, the scales of justice are often unfairly tipped. Women can use the system in an act of revenge against a former mate or to gain an unfair advantage in court proceedings. It is in your best interest to take a restraining order seriously and never assume your innocence will be made clear without a strong defense. Consulting an lawyer with experience in restraining order cases is the only way to protect your rights against acts of legal manipulation.