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2012 Legislation - Domestic and Sexual Violence

Effective July 1, 2012

Protective Orders

SB445 (Vogel)/HB1033 (McClellan) - Permanent Protective Orders  - This legislation provides a circuit court jurisdiction to hear petitions to modify, dissolve, or extend a permanent protective order if the circuit court issued the order.   In addition, when a protective order is issued, the court, including the circuit court, is required to enter and transfer identifying information into the Virginia Criminal Information Network (VCIN).   Effective July 1, 2013, any circuit court clerk who does not use the Statewide Case Management System operated and maintained by the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court shall provide protective orders directly to the Virginia Criminal Information Network in an electronic format approved by the Department of State Police.  Until July 1, 2013, such circuit court clerks shall forthwith forward the protective order to the primary law-enforcement agency providing service and entry of protective orders for entry into the VCIN. 

HB770 (Landes) - Emergency Protective Orders and Law Enforcement Officers - This legislation provides that no emergency protective order issued pursuant to Chapter 9.1 of Title 19.2 of the Code may be issued against a law-enforcement officer for any action arising out of the lawful performance of his duties.  This section does not apply to protective orders issued to protect a child, based on family abuse, or issued in connection with a pending domestic relations case. 

SB300 (Howell) - Revisions to Protective Order Statutes - Juveniles, Venue - This legislation makes a number of changes to the provisions governing protective orders issued by a juvenile and domestic relations district court, including (i) clarifying that only violations related to trespass, criminal offenses, acts of abuse, or prohibited contacts are Class 1 misdemeanors; (ii) clarifying that juvenile and domestic relations district courts have jurisdiction over all protective orders that involve juveniles, whether as the alleged victim or as respondent; and (iii) allowing judges to prohibit contact between the respondent and the allegedly abused person or that person's family.  The legislation also clarifies venue for protective orders issued under Chapter 9.1 of Title 19.2 of the Code. 

Sexual Violence

HB973 (Bell)/SB436 (Obenshain) - Enhanced Penalties for Rape, Forcible Sodomy, or Object Sexual Penetration of a Child Under 13 -  Imposes a mandatory minimum life sentence for rape, forcible sodomy, or object sexual penetration of a child under the age of 13 when it is alleged in the indictment that the offender was 18 years of age or older at the time of the offense.

HB969 (Bell)/SB301 (Howell) - Campus Police Inclusion in Sexual Assault Response Teams - This legislation requires Commonwealth's Attorneys to invite chiefs of campus police located within their jurisdictions to attend Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) meeting.

HB965 (Bell)/SB302 (Howell) - Campus Police; Mutual Aid Agreements with Local Law-enforcement Agencies and State Police - Requires campus police to enter into mutual aid agreements with an adjacent local law-enforcement agency or the State Police for cooperation in providing assistance with the investigation of deaths and alleged rapes occurring on college campuses.

Domestic Violence/Criminal Offenses

SB459 (Herring)/HB752 (Cline) - Strangulation - This legislation provides that any person who, without consent, impedes the blood circulation or respiration of another person by knowingly, intentionally, and unlawfully applying pressure to the neck of such person resulting in the wounding or bodily injury of such person is guilty of strangulation, a Class 6 felony.  This bill creates a new offense for strangulation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Domestic Violence: Effects on the Workplace 

Domestic violence often follows a victim to work. The U.S. Department of Justice once reported that 13,000 acts of domestic violence occurred at the workplace in a year. Both victims and abusers may experience decreased productivity as a result of problems associated with domestic violence, such as legal and medical problems.

What Can Employers Do?

There are a number of ways that employers can combat domestic violence, assist employees in need, and improve productivity at the workplace.

  • Increase awareness of domestic violence in your workplace. Invite speakers to address employees and inform them about domestic violence and how it can affect the workplace. Local domestic violence programs may offer educational seminars free of charge. Click below to find the local domestic violence shelter nearest you.

  • Make information about local domestic violence and sexual assault programs and other resources available at work.

  • Provide support and assistance to victims of domestic violence. Be flexible with work hours and locations. Offer to screen calls, provide escorts to and from the vehicle, or grant additional leave to handle legal, medical, or family concerns.

  • Set up an emergency fund for victims of abuse.

  • If an employee has been abusive, state that the abusive behavior is wrong. Make information available on batterer intervention programs.

  • Encourage employees to utilize Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) when help is needed.

Local Domestic Violence Shelter - picture of a house  Local Domestic Violence Shelters

Domestic Violence - Safe at Work

If you are experiencing domestic violence, take steps to help you stay safe at work. Consider the following:

  • Keep emails or notes of any threats you receive while at work.

  • Arrange an escort to and from your car.

  • Ask to have your calls screened.

  • If you have a protective order, make sure you keep a copy with you at all times, and give a copy to company security.

  • Try to revise your working schedule.

  • Know and understand workplace policies.  Encourage your employer to adopt a policy on domestic violence and/or workplace violence if one does not exist currently.

  • Make sure your employer has an emergency contact person for you. 

  • Discuss with your supervisor any other ways that could help you stay safe at work.

** Remember that Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault is not your fault! **

Resources

Posters

Sample Policies

Brochures

Links

 

 

 

 

 

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Domestic Violence - Other Related Statutes

Notable legislative changes effective July 1, 2012, are highlighted below.   Please note that this list is not inclusive of all Code sections related to other related statutes.

Other Related Statutes

Changes effective July 1, 2012

For the full text of these Code sections, please click on the link to go to the Code of Virginia.

§ 19.2-165.1.    Payment of medical fees in certain criminal cases; reimbursement.  (medical fees expended in the gathering of evidence through physical evidence recovery kit (“PERK”) examinations)

§ 15.2-1627.4.  Coordination of multidisciplinary response to sexual assault.

Commonwealth's attorneys are required to invite chiefs of campus police departments of any institutions of higher education located within the jurisdiction to attend the annual sexual assault response team (SART) meeting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Domestic Violence - Arrest and Polygraph Procedures

Notable legislative changes effective July 1, 2012, are highlighted below.  For the full text of these Code sections, please click on the link to go to the Code of Virginia.  Please note that this list is not inclusive of all Code sections related to Arrest and Polygraph Procedures.

Arrest and Polygraph Procedures

For the full text of these Code sections, please click on the link to go to the Code of Virginia.

§ 19.2-81.3.   Arrest without a warrant authorized in cases of assault and battery against a family or household member and stalking and for violations of protective orders; procedure, etc.

§ 19.2-9.1.     Written notice required for complaining witness who is requested to take polygraph test.