Restraining Order Issued Based On E-Mail To Employer
- November 10, 2015
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J.D. v. C.C. was an appeal of a Final Restraining Order (FRO) pursuant to the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (N.J.S.A. 2C:25-17 to 35) granted by the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Passaic County upon the finding that C.C. committed harassment (N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4(a)) against J.D. by sending e-mails to his employer alleging, among other things, that he drove his company vehicle while under the influence (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50). After a 2 year relationship, J.D. proposed marriage to C.C. who rejected him and J.D. elected to terminate their relationship. Thereafter, C.C. began to appear at J.D.’s residence at inopportune times and run into him as he went about his business. C.C. also sent text messages to J.D. indicating that she intended would cause trouble for him and intended to contact his employer. C.C. did send the e-mail and J.D. sought a restraining order. The trial judge issued the Final Restraining Order upon finding that, although no physical assault occurred, the actions of C.C. constituted harassment under N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4(a) and was the behavior that the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act was designed to prevent. Pursuant to State v. Hoffman, 149 N.J. 564 (1997), the elements of harassment include (1) the defendant making or causing to be made a communication; (2) with the purposes to harass another; and (3) in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm to the intended recipient. On appeal, the N.J. Appellate Division found that the e-mail to J.D.’s employer could be designed for no other purpose than to harass J.D. The Appellate Division further held that the need to prevent further abuse, under Silver v. Silver, 387 N.J. Super. 112 (App. Div. 2006), was a factor in this matter and affirmed the decision of the court below. If you are charged with domestic violence or seeking a final restraining order against an abuser, there are specific burdens of proof for both parties in proving or disproving the charges making it critical that you obtain experienced criminal defense counsel to represent you in such matters. For more information regarding domestic violence, restraining orders, assault, battery and other criminal law issues in NJ visit DarlingFirm.com. This blog is for informational purposes only and not intended to replace the advice of an attorney.