What is domestic violence according to Maryland laws?

Domestic violence is a big problem for many people; however, there aren’t any specific laws governing domestic violence in Maryland except for the laws that govern protection orders. Instead of having specific criminal charges for domestic violence, people who are accused of domestic violence will face charges stemming from the crimes committed during the incident.

How can I get protection from my abuser?

If you are dating, married to or a family member of the abuser, you can seek a protection order. That order is a legal document that lets your abuser know that they can’t come within a certain distance of you. Other criteria might also be included. If they don’t comply with the order, they can be arrested without a warrant. If your relationship to your abuser doesn’t meet the criteria for a protection order, you can seek a peace order. You must petition the court for a protection order or peace order based on the domestic violence.

What are some of the possible crimes that can occur in a domestic violence incident?

A domestic violence incident can include crimes like assault, stalking, rape, sexual assault and false imprisonment. Anyone who is contacting police officers to report domestic violence should be as specific as possible about what happened so that the report can reflect accurate information and appropriate charges can be placed if necessary.

Living as a domestic violence victim is a horrifying experience. When you decide to leave this type of situation is a primary concern. Make sure you understand your rights and what options you have to remain safe.

Source: FindLaw, “Maryland Domestic Violence Laws,” accessed Oct. 04, 2015

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