Domestic Violence Resources
Domestic and sexual violence is a crime. Here are important phone numbers and contact information for domestic violence victims.
Here's what you can do when the police arrive:
- Describe what happened in detail. Be sure to show any injuries or damaged property.
- Tell them about any witnesses.
- Tell them about past violence and any guns or other weapons the abuser may have.
- Show them any court documents you have, such as a Protective Order.
- Ask them for the case number or the report and a phone number so you can follow up.
What the police may do:
- Make an arrest if there is probable cause to believe that an assault and battery against a family or household member or another crime has occurred.
- Ask for an Emergency Protective Order if the officer believes you are still in danger.
You have the right to request:
- An Emergency Protective Order from a magistrate that lasts 72 hours or until 5 p.m. the next day that the Domestic Relations Court is in session, whichever is longer. To continue the protection of a protective order, you must seek a Preliminary Protective Order by filing a petition with the Court Services Unit (540-382-5745).
- A warrant directly from a magistrate if the police do not make an arrest.
- Money for expenses, such as medical bills, incurred as a result of the crime (your local victim/witness coordinator can give you the forms).
- Transportation from a police officer to a hospital or shelter. However, police are not required to do so.
Emergency Protective Orders:
- A protective order is a legal order that prohibits further abuse and/or contact between parties.
- You do not have to obtain a criminal warrant to get a protective order.
- The abuser will not be arrested or charged with a crime just because you get a protective order.
- It is only enforceable if it has been served on the abuser.
Court-Issued Protective Orders:
- The abuser to stay away from you and to stop assaulting you and others in your home or family.
- The abuser to leave the home; provide suitable housing for you.
- The abuser to get counseling.
- Temporary possession of a vehicle to you, if jointly owned.
- Temporary custody and visitation of your children to you by the judge at the Protective Order hearing.
If you've been sexually assaulted, you may:
- Go to the police department or hospital.
- Contact the WRC for options and Emergency Advocacy services.
- Contact the WRC for counseling and Legal Advocacy.