“No contact” orders are a common feature in the Florida criminal justice system. They are used in many cases involving allegations of violence, intimidation or threats.
No contact orders are used both for pretrial release situations while a defendant is out on bail or awaiting trial, as well as during probationary periods. Anyone under a no contact order or potentially facing one should be aware of common situations that can lead to a violation.
Florida statute recognizes multiple types of no contact violations
Essentially, if you think that an action could possibly violate a no contact order, it is a good idea to assume that you are correct. It is best to proceed with caution and speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney if you have any questions regarding a no contact order. That being said, here are some of the most common ways that people find themselves accused of violating a no contact order:
- Calling a witness or an alleged victim on the phone — even if your intent is to clear up a misunderstanding or apologize
- Having a friend or relative call or visit the victim or witness in order to express your feelings
- Reaching out to the person via text message or social media, including any tag, “like” on their post, or even a Facebook “poke”
- Showing up at the person’s workplace (even if you think you have legitimate business there)
- Leaving a note on a vehicle that belongs to the person (or on their door or mailbox)
- Asking a friend or relative of the person to pass a message along for you
- Being within 500 feet of the person’s residence, vehicle, place of employment, or a specified place frequented regularly by that person
Mistakes happen. If you find yourself accused of violating of your pretrial release or probation, don’t try to handle the situation on your own without experienced legal guidance.