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CWOF - Assault - victim wants to be able to communicate with assaulter

Boston, MA |

Got into a fight with a friend, hit him, got in trouble with the cops. Currently on probation. I was ordered to not to contact or abuse the victim. I found out through his friend that he wants it dropped so we can communicate. Does he have any power in doing this? Can a judge really deny communication to an individual if it's not the will of the said individual?

Attorney Answers 3


Yes, judges can and do issue "no contact" orders over the objection of the person "protected."

Sometimes a judge will lift the order if it comes to the judge's attention that the individual does not want the order. You have to be extremely careful how you do that, though, because the judge may be suspicious that there has been a violation of the order in setting up the request. Best to do this through a lawyer.

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The judge has the authority to restrict communication by the defendant with the "victim". This is established either as a condition of bond or as a separate order of court. A violation of the court's order, regardless of the "victim's" agreement to communicate with the defendant, would thus be a serious matter. Your attorney and his/her investigators may connect the "victim" to determine what their position is and testimony at trial would be.
Also, please note that communication with a "victim" could be interpreted by law enforcement and the prosecution as an attempt to interfere with the judicial process and intimidate the witness. This would be a separate new criminal charge against the defendant. Be Aware and beware.

Please do NOT use this answer/response to say or do anything regarding your situation. This answer/response is based on the information provided in the question asked and requires a much more complete context than is available in this public forum. BEFORE you say or do anything consult with an experienced Federal and/or state criminal defense attorney in your jurisdiction who will listen to you and your concerns.

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Andrew W. Cowan

Andrew W. Cowan


What may be less obvious to an out-of-state practitioner is that the abbreviation CWOF means that the case has been disposed of and the no contact order is a condition of probation. Witness intimidation charges would be highly unlikely here, unless the content of the communication was intimidating… but a violation of the order would be a violation of probation, and would expose the defendant to a jail sentence of up to 2.5 years.

Raymond George Wigell

Raymond George Wigell


Your clarification is much appreciated. Happy Holidays.


Protective orders are set up all the time. It's up to the judge that set the condition to retract it.


Erick Platten
State Wide Representation

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