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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27708
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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I had an arguement with someone and they pushed me. I left

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I had an arguement with someone and they pushed me. I left and had the cops come out because of the assault. The person told the cops she just pushed me out of the doorway. So they did not give her a ticket or anything. Then they gave me a no tresspass on the property warning. Now she is threatening a restraining order at the apartment complex she owns. My friend lives at the apartment building. I think she is doing it just for spite. Can she get a restraining order against me even though I am the one that was struck?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 6 years ago.

Yes, unfortunately, she can get a restraining order against you. You never should have left the scene if you were going to involve the police in your dispute with her. Because you did, based on whatever she told the police, they are on her side and not yours.

They have given you a warning, and that warning doesn't come out of thin air. They have been told by your friend that you're bothering her and that next time you turn up she will want you arrested. She may or may not be just saying that for spite. But she can make it stick. And then, even if you managed to win the case at trial, having to fight the case and appear in court would be very inconvenient. You should stay away from her.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I did not leave the scene I went outside and waited in the driveway until the cops came
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 6 years ago.

Thanks for clarifying.

I don't know what she said to them, but whatever it was the police feel that she is the one they want to protect here.

You're not now in trouble. But you can assume that if you step back on that property and she does call the police, you will be arrested. That's what they've told you and they would not have said that if your friend hadn't told them that this time she didn't want to press charges but that she did want to be left alone from here.

I don't disagree with you. She could just be angry because you called the police in the first place. But if that's not true, you're on notice that you're not to step foot on the property. You risk arrest by calling her bluff. I wouldn't advise it.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.


The thing that you are not understanding is that the incident happened at her home. She also has a rental unit that is 5 miles away that my friend lives at. She is trying to keep me from going to see my friend at that address because she owns the building... I dont think that is right... I thiought a restraining order is when someone is harrassing you threatening you and if they had hurt you or assaulted you... I did none of those things...I was her friend and we got in an argument and she called me some names and I called her a few after she called me some and then she pushed me and I went outside and called the cops because she had argued with her grandson a week earlier and pushed him around too. I just thought that this was getting to be a pattern for her and wanted her to stop. So the question I have been asking all along is does she really have the right for a restraining order...if so maybe I should get one on her...since the police officer did say that she admitted pushing me and she did say that I did not push her.

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 6 years ago.

Thank you for clarifying. Perhaps it was the lateness of the hour but I didn't realize that the landlord and your friend were two different people, as you referred to both of them as she. This new information modifies my answer, but it does not completely change it.

If you have been invited to your friend's home, then you have permission and authority to enter the building to see her. So you wouldn't be trespassing if you went to see your friend. BUT her landlord also has rights and has made it clear that she does not want you in her building and that she will take action if she finds you there again.

Presently, there is no order of protection against you. The warning that you received from the police is simply a courtesy to both you and to the landlord of the building so that you can regulate yourself accordingly. But this is where the answer I have provided you already kicks back in. Can she call the police and say that you are trespassing? Yes, she can. Can the police then show up and arrest you, even though both you and your friend tell them that you were invited onto the premises? Yes, they can, because they warned you already that they would do that.

Could you then be convicted of this charge? That's a different story, because the state would have to show beyond a reasonable doubt that you were trespassing, and that might be difficult given the whole history and background of this situation. But it doesn't mean that the state can't try if they want to.

Or, maybe she will not call the police and have them arrest you at the scene but simply go to the courts and swear out a protective order and then have you served with that order. That would make you a defendant on a criminal matter -- trespass (or harassment if she feels you are deliberately putting yourself in her way and she claims to be fearful of you) -- and would keep you from your friend at her place ever again while that order is still in effect. That is because such orders usually scope out how physically close you can actually get to the complainant (generally can't come within 1,000 feet) which would be enough to make her whole building off limits to you regardless of the wishes of your friend who lives there too.

So in the end, we come down to the same thing. This may be spiteful. Or she may mean it. But one way or the other the law is likely to enforce it. And while you will get your day in court to get a judge or jury to consider your side of the story, you will do so as a defendant on a criminal case.

The safer policy would be to see your friend elsewhere and let the landlord calm down before setting foot on her premises.
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