When you are arrested for a domestic violence crime, a criminal protective order will be imposed against you by the judge. You have the right to challenge the need for that criminal protective order, but only if you make your challenge when the protective order is entered by the judge. If you wait, you waive your chance to contest the need for the criminal protective order. This law comes from the Fernando A. case, and the Fernando A. hearing can impact your case.
The Fernando A. Case
This rule comes from the case of State of Connecticut v. Fernando A. This was a 2009 case decided by the Connecticut Supreme Court, the highest court within Connecticut. In this case, the defendant wanted the opportunity to have a hearing to contest the entry of the criminal protective order against him. The criminal court judge denied this request, so the defendant appealed this decision. The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that the defendant was entitled to a subsequent hearing to contest the criminal protective order, but only if they made the request for the hearing at the time the criminal protective order went into effect.
So, if you are charged with a domestic violence crime, our law requires that the judge enter a criminal protective order against you. When that criminal protective order is entered, you must make a challenge to the protective order under the Fernando A. case. If you make your challenge, the protective order will still be put into place temporarily. You will then be scheduled for a contested hearing within a reasonable time period.
Until the judge holds your “Fernando A. hearing,” you have to follow the criminal protective order set out for you. After the hearing, if the prosecutor cannot establish the need for the protective order, it will be removed. If the prosecutor makes his or her case, the protective order will remain in place. In this case, you will have to continue to obey its terms until your case ends or the terms are modified by the judge. It is important that you make your challenge at the first court date when the judge enters the protective order. Otherwise, you will waive your right to challenge the need for the protective order.
Your Domestic Violence Case
It is important to act quickly if you want to challenge a protective order related to a Connecticut domestic violence charge. If you would like to do this, consider contacting an attorney to assist you. A lawyer can make sure that you do not miss your opportunity to challenge the protective order against you. If you need more information, we are happy to help you through this situation.