Stalking Victim (Getting a Restraining Order)
A Permanent Restraining Order (PRO) is only available after a stalking conviction. A verdict of guilty will operate as an application for a Permanent Restraining order which would limit the contact of the defendant and the victim. A Permanent Restraining Order grants the following:
- an order prohibiting the defendant from entering the home, property, school, place of work, or any other place specified by the victim in the order.
- an order prohibiting the defendant making contact with the victim which would cause annoyance or alarm. This includes communication through a third party or communication to the victim's friends and family which would cause annoyance or alarm to the victim.
A hearing will be held after the conviction of stalking to create the PRO, unless the court is told otherwise by the victim. After it is created, notice of the PRO is sent to the appropriate officers of the law in order to ensure the safety of the victim, and any PRO will be enforced by all law enforcement officers throughout the State. Any person in violation of a PRO will be found in contempt (N.J.S.A 2C:29-9), an offense of the fourth degree which is punishable by 6 to 18 months in prison.
If a person under the age of 18 or a mentally disabled person is dealing with a stalker, they have the right to obtain a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) without a conviction of stalking. A parent or guardian would file a complaint with the Superior Court against the alleged stalker. If it appears to the judge that the child or person in question is indeed being stalked by the defendant, he will issue a Temporary Restraining Order against the defendant. This order provides the same protection as a PRO and will remain in effect until:
- the defendant is convicted of stalking, in which case the court can determine if a PRO is necessary
- the victim's parent or guardian, or the victim upon reaching the age of 18 requests the TRO to be lifted
If you have any questions regarding this statute please feel free to contact a NJ stalking crime defense lawyer at LS&P Lawyers for help. We are available 24/7 for consultation and have an experienced team of criminal lawyers willing to meet your legal needs.