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Domestic Violence - Address Confidentiality

The Address Confidentiality Program (ACP) is a confidential mail-forwarding service for domestic violence and/or stalking victims who have recently relocated to a location unknown to their abuser or stalker.  The goal of the ACP is to help domestic violence victims keep their new address confidential. 

The ACP provides cost-free mail forwarding service.  Program participants are authorized to use a “substitute” mailing address in lieu of a home address.

The actual address of a program participant is confidential and available only to those employees involved in the operation of the Address Confidentiality Program and to law-enforcement officers for law-enforcement purposes.

The ACP is not retroactive and cannot provide absolute protection.  The ACP is only one piece of a victim’s overall safety plan.  Each ACP participant should seek counseling through a crisis center and shelter services to develop an overall safety plan. 

Please contact your local domestic violence program for an application to the program.  Please contact the Statewide Sexual and Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-838-8238 for assistance in finding the local DV program that serves your locality. 

For more information about the program or questions regarding ACP, please contact the Office of the Attorney General at 804-786-2071 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  

 

 

 

 

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Statutes and Legislation: Protective Orders

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 Protective Orders (Formerly Protective Orders in Cases of Stalking, Sexual Battery, and Serious Bodily Injury).

Protective Orders (Formerly Protective Orders in Cases of Stalking, Sexual Battery, and Serious Bodily Injury)

§ 19.2-152.7:1. Definitions. ("Act of violence, force, or threat")

§ 19.2-152.8. Emergency protective orders authorized.

Effective July 1, 2012: No emergency protective order shall be issued pursuant to this section against a law-enforcement officer for any action arising out of the lawful performance of his duties.

§ 19.2-152.9. Preliminary protective order.

§ 19.2-152.10. Protective order.

Effective July 1, 2012:  When a protective order is issued, the court, including a circuit court if the circuit court issued the order, 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 VCIN.

Effective July 1, 2012:  The juvenile and domestic relations district court shall have jurisdiction over all petitions filed for the purpose of obtaining a protective order pursuant to § 19.2-152.8, 19.2-152.9, or 19.2-152.10 if either the alleged victim or the respondent is a juvenile.  (See § 16.1-241.)

§ 19.2-152.11. Venue for protective orders.  Effective July 1, 2012.  Proceedings in which a protective order is sought shall be commenced where (i) either party has his principal residence; (ii) the act of violence, force, or threat by the respondent against the petitioner occurred; or (iii) a protective order was issued if, at the time the proceeding is commenced, the order is in effect to protect the petitioner or a family or household member of the petitioner.

§ 18.2-60.4. Violation of protective orders; penalty.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Statutes and Legislation: Family Abuse

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 Civil Statutes and Protective Orders in Cases of Family Abuse.

Civil Statutes and Protective Orders in Cases of Family Abuse

§ 16.1-228. Definitions.  See "Family abuse" and "Family or household member."

§ 16.1-253.1. Preliminary protective orders in cases of family abuse; confidentiality.

§ 16.1-253.2. Violation of provisions of protective orders; penalty.

Effective July 1, 2012, this code section was amended to clarify which violations of family abuse protective orders are misdemeanor violations:

[A]ny person who violates any provision of a protective order issued pursuant to §§ 16.1-253, 16.1-253.1, 16.1-253.4, 16.1-278.14, or 16.1-279.1 or subsection B of § 20-103, which when such violation involves a provision of the protective order that prohibits such person from (i) going or remaining upon land, buildings, or premises or from; (ii) further acts of family abuse; or (iii) committing a criminal offense, or which prohibits contacts between by the respondent and with the respondent's allegedly abused person or family or household member members of the allegedly abused person as the court deems appropriate, is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. § 16.1-253.2.

§ 16.1-253.4. Emergency protective orders authorized in certain cases; penalty.

Effective July 1, 2012: The language regarding contacts of the respondent was clarified to prohibit contacts by the respondent with the allegedly abused person and  family or household members of the allegedly abused person, not family or household members of the respondent. 

§ 16.1-279.1. Protective order in cases of family abuse.

Effective July 1, 2012:  When a protective order is issued, the court, including a circuit court if the circuit court issued the order, 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 VCIN.

§ 16.1-264.A1. Service of summons; proof of service; penalty.  Emergency protective orders. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Statutes and Legislation

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 sexual and domestic violence.

Criminal Statutes - Domestic and Sexual Violence

§ 18.2-51.6. Strangulation of another; penalty.  Effective July 1, 2012. 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.

§ 2.2-515.2Address Confidentiality Program.

§ 18.2-57.2. Assault and battery against a family or household member; penalty.

§ 18.2-57.3. Persons charged with first offense of assault and battery against a family or household member may be placed on local community-based probation; conditions; education and treatment programs; costs and fees; violations; discharge.

§ 18.2-60.3. Stalking; penalty.

§ 18.2-61. Rape.

Effective July 1, 2012, in cases where the victim is a child under the age of 13, and it is alleged in the indictment that the offender was 18 years of age or older at the time of the offense, the punishment shall include a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison. 

§ 18.2-67.1. Forcible sodomy.

Effective July 1, 2012, in cases where the victim is a child under the age of 13, and it is alleged in the indictment that the offender was 18 years of age or older at the time of the offense, the punishment shall include a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison. 

§ 18.2-67.2. Object sexual penetration; penalty.

Effective July 1, 2012, in cases where the victim is a child under the age of 13, and it is alleged in the indictment that the offender was 18 years of age or older at the time of the offense, the punishment shall include a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison. 

§ 18.2-67.3. Aggravated sexual battery; penalty.

§ 18.2-67.4. Sexual battery.

§ 18.2-67.4:1. Infected sexual battery; penalty.

§ 18.2-308.1:4. Purchase or transportation of firearm by persons subject to protective orders; penalty.