Dating violence, sexual violence, repeat violence, and protective injunctions

Under Florida law (Florida Statutes §784.046), a person who is a victim of repeat violence dating violence or sexual violence will have a cause of action to apply for an injunction for protection from the person who poses the threat.

Repeat Violence

Repeat violence means two or more incidents of violence or stalking by the respondent (the person committing violence) which are directed against the petitioner (victim). One of those incidents must have taken place within 6 months of the date the petition is filed.

Sexual Violence

Sexual violence means sexual battery, lewd and lascivious act, luring or enticing a child, or any other forcible felony involving the commission of a sex act.

Dating Violence

Dating violence means violence between individuals who have had a continuing or significant romantic or intimate relationship. The following factors will determine if there is such a relationship:

  1. A dating relationship must have existed within the past 6 months;
  2. The nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection of sexual involvement between the parties; and
  3. The relationship must have included persons that have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship
Protective Injunction

The statute gives the victim of repeated violence standing in the Circuit Court to file a sworn petition for a protective injunction. A person who is the repeatedly victim of dating violence and has reasonable cause to believe he or she is in imminent danger of becoming the victim or another act of dating violence, has standing to file a sworn petition for injunction for protection against dating violence.

A person who is the victim of sexual violence also has standing to file for a protective injunction in circuit court against sexual violence if one of the following apply:

  1. The person who is the victim of sexual violence has reported the sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and is cooperating in any criminal proceeding against the respondent; or
  2. The respondent who committed the sexual violence against the victim was sentenced to state prison for sexual violence and the respondent’s term is due to expire within 90 days.

The victim may seek an injunction without have an attorney though it the victim should have an attorney at the final hearing as should the person accused. The petition must be sworn and shall state all the incidents of repeat violence, sexual violence or dating violence and shall state the specific facts that form the basis of the need for an injunction.

Sexual violence, dating violence, and repeat violence are serious offenses that can have severe consequences. If you or someone you know has been accused of one of these offenses, you need a Florida Bar Board Certified Criminal Trial Lawyer on your side. Ken Swartz has the experience and expertise in criminal law to handle your problem. As one of the top Miami criminal defense attorneys in Florida, he is prepared for your defense.

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