A former Bellevue police officer has been arrested again in connection with a domestic violence case in which he has already twice been charged with violating a court-ordered no-contact order. The man has previously been charged with tampering with a witness and fourth-degree assault upon a woman and he was arrested again last week, pertaining to the same case, for tampering with a witness and for two more violations of the court's no-contact order. The ex-police officer is now back in jail on $500,000 bond.
Determining the Necessity of a No-Contact Order
A no-contact order is also sometimes known as a restraining order and it prohibits a defendant from contacting a victim. A defendant charged with domestic violence, whether they have been arrested or not, will appear in court where the judge will determine the necessity of imposing a no-contact order. In Washington State, the prosecutor must provide the following information “for the court's review:
- The defendant's criminal history, if any, that occurred in Washington or any other state;
- If available, the defendant's criminal history that occurred in any tribal jurisdiction; and
- The defendant's individual order history.”
It is important to know that “so long as a court finds probable cause, the court may issue or extend a no-contact order even if the defendant fails to appear at arraignment.” No-contact orders generally last for one year unless otherwise specified at the time of issuance or unless extended at a later date. If a no-contact order is put in place, it will then be entered with the appropriate law enforcement agency. Entry of the no-contact order into the law enforcement information system serves as notice to enforcement agencies as to the existence of the order.
Violating a No-Contact Order in Washington State
A person who has and is aware that they have a no-contact order is prohibited from the following:
- "Acts or threats of violence against, or stalking of, a protected party, or restraint provisions prohibiting contact with a protected party;
- Excluding the person from a residence, workplace, school, or day care;
- Prohibiting a person from knowingly coming within, or knowingly remaining within, a specified distance of a location;
- Prohibiting interfering with the protected party's efforts to remove a pet owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the petitioner, respondent, or a minor child residing with either the petitioner or the respondent; or
- Violating a foreign protection order specifically indicating that a violation will be a crime."
A violation of any of the preceding is a gross misdemeanor, except in cases in which the violation amounts to assault in which case the penalty may be elevated to a Class C Felony.
The violation of a no-contact order is taken very seriously in Washington State, even if violated unintentionally. If you or someone you love has been charged with the violation of a no-contact order you should seek legal counsel immediately by contacting the Law Offices of Steve Karimi today.
Attorney Steve Karimi is a dedicated lawyer who will work hard for you. He is a former prosecutor who now uses his knowledge and insight into the criminal justice system to successfully defend domestic violence clients. Contact the Law Offices of Steve Karimi today.
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