Violation of a 50B Order (Restraining Order)
A 50B order in North Carolina, known commonly as a restraining order or a Domestic Violence Protective Order (DVPO), is a specific type of restraining order designed for victims of domestic violence. Unlike a standard restraining order, the 50B order provides greater protections for victims and gives law enforcement more power to charge and arrest an abuser that violates his/her 50B. As such, violating this order is not just “contempt of court,” but instead it’s a serious criminal offense carrying extensive penalties.
Whether a restraining order from a North Carolina court, another state court, or a Native American tribal court, violating the 50B in North Carolina can result in a Class A1 misdemeanor punishable by up to 150 days (5 months) in jail. Keep in mind that if you are charged with another crime while violating the order, the penalties are increased (such as a Class H felony becoming a Class G felony, which effectively doubles the prison sentence). As such, if you or someone you know has been charged with this crime, you’ll need a Raleigh criminal defense lawyer experienced with domestic violence and 50B order cases.
Types of 50B Order Violations
Violation of a 50B order can occur in many different ways, and if someone has a restraining order against you, it is important to remember that you can violate your order even when contact was initiated by the person the order was meant to protect. Furthermore, to prevent violation, you need to be accustomed to the protections a 50B offers, such as:
- No contact, including contact with household members or children, if applicable
- Granting temporary possession of a residence and excluding the abuser
- Granting temporary possession of an animal
- Order the abuser away from specific places associated with the victim, such as school, work, children’s daycare or school, or a certain distance at all times (500 feet)
- Granting temporary possession of a vehicle
- Additional prohibitions and regulations deemed necessary to protect the victim
In addition to a misdemeanor violation of a 50B, which can include, but not restricted or limited to, violations of the above elements, there are several other crimes associated with a 50B order violation. For instance:
- Repeated violation of a domestic violence protective order, 50B-4.1(f): if you have two prior convictions for violating a 50B order, you can be charged with a Class H felony punishable by up to 39 months imprisonment.
- Violation of a domestic violence protective order with a deadly weapon, 50B-4.1(g): if you are in possession of a deadly weapon and you are caught violating the 50B order, you can be charged with a Class H felony punishable by up to 39 months imprisonment.
- Entering a domestic violence safe house or haven, 50B-4.1(g1): if you enter a designated safe house or haven for victims of domestic violence (where the person under the order is residing), you can be charged with a Class H felony punishable by up to 39 months imprisonment.
Contact the Law Office of Dewey P. Brinkley Today
If you have been charged with violating a 50B order, it is critical to contact a prominent and experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. Whether a text message, a photo of you near prohibited areas, or numerous other pieces of evidence, it is fairly common for the court to forgo a profound investigation into the alleged offense and determine if there are any extraneous circumstances. Likewise, prosecutors and judges can be biased, especially if the 50B order was given because of a previous domestic violence charge.
With the legal representation and guidance of Raleigh attorney Dewey P. Brinkley, you can stand a fighting chance against these charges. We’ll use the full extent of North Carolina and federal laws to fully investigate the circumstances surrounding the arrest and we’ll aggressively defend your case in courts. To fight these charges, call the Law Office of Dewey P. Brinkley today at (919) 832-0307 for a free consultation.