I find it very disturbing that a person can walk into the courthouse and in approximately 25 minutes file a restraining order against just about anyone. Well, that is what happened to me.
I have lived in Landers for approximately 28 years. I get along with my neighbors and we try to look out for our neighborhood. I have no history of violence and I do not like violence or abuse of any kind because I was taught at a very young age to respect all people. I am not trying to mislead anyone into thinking that I'm “squeaky clean” because we all make choices in life, whether good or bad, and we must all live with the consequences of our choices. I, too, have made such choices during my lifetime.
The person who filed restraining orders against me did so just one day after the pre-preliminary hearing in her criminal case where I am one of the victims. Plaintiff and her life partner of three years filed the civil harassment restraining order action with no supporting sheriff's reports or evidence other than a witness who swore under oath that I had followed, stalked and harassed plaintiff and her life partner for three long years. This witness lied. When I stood in that courtroom and heard the allegations and down-right lies against me, I felt sick.
Approximately one year ago I was slugged in the mouth by plaintiff's life partner. At the time I did not make a sheriff's report but there was someone in my vehicle who witnessed the incident. During the hearing for plaintiff's restraining orders, while again under oath, plaintiff's life partner denied ever slugging me. My witness was not allowed to testify! The court believed plaintiff and her witness.
I do not believe I received due process during the restraining order hearing. I was not allowed to finish questioning plaintiff and/or her witnesses. The court was just too busy with pending criminal matters that were scheduled to be heard after our restraining order hearing. The court granted plaintiff's restraining order without hearing all my evidence.
In my opinion legislators need to make it more difficult for people to file restraining orders. Perhaps there should be a panel established to review each case before it is filed with the court, whose mandate is to eliminate frivolous filings.
I have always had the highest regard for our judicial system and our judges but I do not feel I received justice in this case. I did not follow, stalk or harass plaintiff and/or her life partner but I now have a restraining order against me that will be on my record forever.