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Joseph, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 7280
Experience:  I have 15 years experience in the legal field, currently specializing in criminal and family law
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What is the best means to help a friend who is being abused

Customer Question

What is the best means to help a friend who is being abused by a spouse that is supposed to by their job enforce all the laws we citizens are supposed to follow? The straight and narrow of this is she feels trapped because he is in law enforcement and thinks it will just be covered up plus concerned about her children.  And I can't sit here and watch it go on any more. Plus he's an alcoholic with anger issues.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Joseph replied 6 years ago.

Hello and thanks for choosing Just Answer®. I am a licensed criminal and family law attorney, and I will be glad to try and assist you.


To provide you with accurate information, could you please clarify these points so I can best address your inquiry:


  1. Can you be a bit more specific with details?
  2. What, if anything, is your friend willing to do to help herself?



Once I hear back from you, I will be glad to let you know my answer. There may be some delay as I am assisting other customers or am away from my computer. Please rest assured, however, that I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

1) Details: He's been very abusive physically with her for a few years now and constantly berates her that she is no good. She had a stroke a few years back and it took her out of being able to hold a job plus dealing with serious medical issues (heart issues since about 19).


She is a heart patient that had a stroke and daily fights her Lupus disorder. She does not feel comfortable in her setting and is highly concerned with her kids safety.


2) That's part I've been trying to work with her. Getting her to open up to her physicians and heart doctors. So I think the first step is admitting she is an abused spouse. I've given her the national hot line number for abused and battered spouses.

Expert:  Joseph replied 6 years ago.

Candidly, if she isn't willing to help herself, there is probably little you can do. That is, if course, the reason I asked the question. With that in mind, she certainly has options....


It certainly sounds like she is eligible for a restraining order (RO). An RO is based on acts of violence or threats of violence. To obtain an RO, she would need to go to the local courthouse and request a petition for an RO. She would fill out the petition for review by a judge. If the judge felt that she was reasonably in fear for her safety, the RO would be issued. In that event, the husband would be prohibited from having any contact with your friend.


If there is anything recent, she could potentially have him arrested. If there have been any recent incidents of battery (an unlawful touching) or assault (placing her in fear for her safety), she could call the local police department and provide the details of the events. If the officers felt the had probable cause, he could be arrested and criminally prosecuted.


She could file for divorce. This is, of course, the most extreme remedy, but it certainly seems worth exploring. If she is indeed being abused, she should certainly consider separating herself from her abuser.


If she is interested in pursuing any of these matters, first, you should begin with your state bar association. The Ohio State Bar has a website, it is located at


I do not know your county of residence but your county bar association likely has a similar site that will be more specific to your location.


Additionally, Martindale Hubbell is a national organization that rates attorneys across the country. Their website is located at


Another nationwide website is located at This site lists attorneys by geographic location and area of practice.


Additionally, there is quite likely a legal aid society in your area. A quick internet search and/or phone book search should locate the society closest to you.


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Expert:  Joseph replied 6 years ago.

I am going off-line for the evening. Please feel free to respond, if necessary, and know that I will be back on-line tomorrow.


Thank you for your patience.