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Absent a Restraining Order, Domestic Violence Prompts Orange County's Deadliest Shooting

English: The Salon Meritage hair salon in Seal...
English: The Salon Meritage hair salon in Seal Beach, California, with floral tributes following the 2011 Seal Beach shooting . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
On Wednesday afternoon in Seal Beach, California, a gunman walked into a hair salon and opened fire, killing eight people. Among those killed was the shooter Scott Dekraai’s ex-wife of three years, Michelle Fournier Dekraai.  It is now being suggested that the shooting was motivated by a dispute between the estranged couple over custody of their seven-year old son.

Even though the couple divorced in 2007, and Scott Dekraai remarried, the battle over their son persisted.  In May of 2011, Michelle Dekraai claimed in court papers that Scott was mentally unstable and had threatened to kill himself or someone else at least once.  Often any person with such fears will seek a restraining order from the courts and judging from the results, Michelle had every reason to believe that she was in danger for her life. Yet, despite such allegations, there is no sign that Michelle had filed a restraining order.

If you are a victim of domestic violence you can seek a domestic violence restraining order or a criminal protective order.  Unlike criminal protective orders, which are only issued in cases where criminal charges are pressed, a domestic violence restraining order is issued by the family law courts, and requires no pending criminal charges. These domestic violence restraining orders are issued on an ex parte basis, and set for a hearing in a short period of time. At the hearing, courts can issue longer restraining orders, anywhere from 1 to 5 years.

In cases of domestic violence where a divorce is involved, like between Scott Dekraai and Michelle Fournier Dekraai, a domestic violence restraining order may be appropriate.  The party applying for the order must show a danger of some imminent harm.   To get a long term order, under California Family Code section 6300, restraining orders may be issued “to restrain any person for the purpose of preventing a recurrence of domestic violence and ensuring a period of separation of the persons involved, if an affidavit . . . shows, to the satisfaction of the court, reasonable proof of a past act or acts of abuse.”  Abuse can mean stalking, physical abuse, harassment, making telephone calls, or otherwise threatening a person’s safety.
If you have been the victim of domestic violence or have been accused of committing domestic violence, contact our law firm immediately!
All factual information provided by the Huffington Post
The  Orange County law firm of Don Ho LLP can assist you regarding domestic violence in California or any other legal matter.
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