Home Criminal Defense Harassment Charges and Restraining Orders

Breckenridge Harassment Defense Attorneys

Facing Harassment Charges in Summit County

If you are facing a harassment charge in Summit County or the surrounding area, having a skilled Breckenridge criminal defense attorney is crucial. Harassment charges are unfortunately commonly fabricated and behavior that one person has interpreted as harassment may not paint the full picture. If you want to fight a harassment charge filed against you, call Whitaker & Penix, LLC today at (970) 368-0602 so we can help.

What Is Harassment?

One person can harass another in many ways. These are outlined in CRS 19-9-11. For any of these behaviors, the person’s intent is crucial; they must actually intend to “harass, annoy or alarm” the complainant.

Behaviors that can classify as harassment include hitting/shoving another or similar forms of contact, directing obscene language or gestures to another in public, following a person, intentionally harassing or threatening a person through electronic means, or interfering with their privacy or enjoyment of their property.

Filing a Restraining Order

A person who believes they are being harassed or who is suffering violence or the threats of violence from another can file for a restraining order against that person in court. The petitioner (person filing the request) must submit certain documents and attend a hearing with a judge, usually the same day, without the defendant present. If the judge is satisfied that a restraining order should be granted, they will issue a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), valid for 14 days.

If the holder of a TRO seeks a Permanent Restraining Order (PRO), they must attend a hearing at the date and time specified on the TRO. The defendant may appear and contest the order.

The exact effect of a restraining order is determined by the judge, but often includes terms preventing all contact between the parties, requiring the defendant to avoid certain locations, or temporarily giving the petitioner custody of pets or children.

Types of Protection Orders

A restraining order, also referred to as a protection order, can either be granted through the civil or the criminal court process.

Civil orders are sought by a person filing the appropriate documents and attending a hearing, and include TROs, PROs (discussed above) as well as Emergency Protection Orders (EPOs). EPOs can be obtained by the police for a victim where they believe the victim is in danger of harm from another and the order is obtained outside of the court’s opening hours.

Criminal protection orders on the other hand are granted in conjunction with certain criminal charges. These are considered “mandatory protection orders” as the victim does not have to apply for these. Mandatory protection orders will be granted against a person who is charged with harassment, molestation, acts meant to intimidate, acts that retaliate against someone with evidence of the crime, and witness tampering.

Penalties for Violation of Protection Order

The penalties for a first-time violation of a civil protection order include up to 120 days imprisonment and/or fines of up to $750. If the protection order was issued due to stalking, the parties were in an intimate relationship, or this is the person’s second violation of an order, the potential penalties increase to up to 364 days imprisonment and/or fines of up to $1000.

The penalties for violating a criminal protection order include one year to 18 months imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $1000.

Breckenridge Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whitaker & Penix, LLC Will Defend You

If you are facing a harassment charge in Summit County, whether civilly or criminally, a skilled Breckenridge criminal defense attorney is crucial to help you fight back against this charge and to clear your name. Call Whitaker & Penix now at (970) 368-0602 so we can begin helping you.