In cases of domestic abuse, for example, an Order of Protection may be sought in the Pope County Circuit Court. A citizen may use their private attorney to obtain an Order of Protection or may contact the Victim Coordinator of the Pope County Prosecutor’s Office at (479) 968-8600. An Order of Protection is handled by the Prosecutor’s Office and usually issued only for cases including family or household members. A court issues orders of protection to victims of domestic violence. Orders demand that an abuser stop threatening, stalking or physically assaulting the victim. Orders often demand that an abuser also stop contacting the victim in any form, including in person, by phone or by mail.
A No Contact Order is a pre-trial order issued by a court when a charge of Harassment, Harassing Communications, or Terroristic Threatening is filed in court by a prosecutor. These Orders remain in effect until the trial date of the Defendant. Depending on the outcome of the trial, the Order may either be extended as part of a guilty judgment against the Defendant or set aside by the Court.
A restraining order is different than an Order of Protection. Restraining orders are usually issued civil cases. A restraining order is issued by a court to protect someone from threats or physical abuse. Restraining orders are different from orders of protection because restraining orders can also include provisions for property, child support, spousal maintenance and child custody when these are issues during a divorce or separation. Violations of restraining orders are enforced by the issuing court rather than through criminal prosecution in District Court.
However, a violation of an Order of Protection is a Class A Misdemeanor in the State of Arkansas, and therefore, if an Order of Protection has been issued and served on a person who subsequently violates terms of the order, the police are allowed under Arkansas law to arrest that person if they have probable cause.