Thanks for your patience.Stalking
Here's the relevant portion of the statute for stalking in VA
"...[a person commits stalking when] ... on more than one occasion [he] engages in conduct directed at another person with the intent to place, or when he knows or reasonably should know that the conduct places that other person in reasonable fear of death, criminal sexual assault, or bodily injury to that other person or to that other person's family or household member
As I said in our chat session, the ball game incident could not be the second incident as required by statute. You were invited. Enough said. Hopefully, she's not claiming that you were "stalking" her when you took your children to watch her play softball. Ridiculous!
The protective order is standard procedure when a stalking charge is done. Violation of that order is an additional charge.Assault charge
That's code section 18.2-57.2
. An assault in Virginia is a threat to do bodily harm, or an attempted battery.
An assault that is a threat has to be credible, so it just depends on the circumstances. Calling someone "choice names" could be a threat, if it is up in the person's face, or is a very angry stream of insults made in close proximity to the person. Just calling someone names, though, no matter how insulting, is not a crime by itself. The circumstances have to show that you intended to threaten her by calling her names and that she reasonably felt threatened.
An assault which is an attempted battery is like swinging at someone but missing. For this to be an assault, you have to be within physical range to commit the completed crime (battery). If I swung at you from 100 yards away, it's not an assault because I can't reasonably complete the action. That's just me acting like a fool.
Are there other witnesses who can back you up to dispute what she says happened at the ball game? You yourself can testify at your trial
, if you wish, but if you have others to corroborate what really
happened, that would help. When you meet with an attorney (more on this later), make sure you take the names, telephone numbers, and addresses of the witnesses you believe to be helpful to you.What to do now
First order of business, get an attorney. You may need two. One for criminal defense, and one for family law. A lot of attorneys do both. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court
can appoint one to represent you on the protective order and assault cases, but not for a divorce, custody or visitation case. If you do not know an attorney in your area, try the Virginia State Bar attorney referral service
. They should be able to point you in the right direction.
If you don't already have one, you may wish to get a temporary custody and visitation order from either a J&DR court or, if you are heading toward a divorce, from a Circuit Court. Again, you will probably need an attorney to help you handle these matters.
For now, stay away from her at all costs. You may be understandably emotionally bothered by what appears to be her being way too friendly with another man, but the worst thing you could do is violate the protective order and risk losing visitation with or custody of the children. If necessary, have someone else (a friend, your mom or dad, a cousin, etc.) go with you when you pick up and drop off the children for visitation, so there's no mistaking what happened.
I wonder if her relationship with this man started before your marriage ended? If so, she might have committed adultery. That would be a grounds for divorce and might help you to "lock and load" in preparation for a divorce, if that's coming down the road.
Get advice from an attorney in your area as to how best to proceed. Do NOT talk to the cops or anyone else, for that matter, (except for your attorney, obviously) about anything you're charged with.
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