The Coryell County Crime Victims Office is available to assist victims of domestic violence who seek protective orders. We are available during regular business hours and can meet victims either at our Gatesville office or, by appointment only, at the Coryell County Annex office in Copperas Cove.
You or the abuser must live in Coryell County, and you must provide a daytime address where the abuser can be served with the Temporary Ex Parte Order and notice of hearing date, as well as identifying information of the abuser (date of birth, drivers license number, social security number). Some of the requirements that must be met for a Protective Order to be granted include establishment of a relationship (meaning that you and the abuser may be divorced, have or currently live together, had a child together, had a dating relationship or if you are related by blood or marriage) and a recent physical altercation between you and the abuser has occurred, including pushing, shoving, slapping, hitting, kicking, choking or any other act intended to cause physical harm or the threat of imminent physical abuse has occurred and is likely to occur in the future. Mental abuse and emotional abuse are not part of the definition of family violence in the Texas Family Code.
If you have a divorce or any kind of suit affecting the parent/child relationship (child support, visitation, custody, paternity) pending in Coryell County, you will need to talk to your attorney about filing your protective order as part of that lawsuit.
Our office does not charge any fee to assist you with the application, which will then be forwarded to the Coryell County Attorney for review and filing with the Court, if it meets the criteria required by law. The County Attorneys office does not charge any attorneys fees to represent you, the county or district clerk cannot charge a protective order applicant any filing fees, and there is not a charge for service of the papers to the abuser. Not every application meets the requirements for a Protective Order and you may be referred to a private attorney or legal aid for a restraining order.
A protective order can be in effect for up to two years and can order the abuser to stay away from where you live and work, order the abuser to not commit family violence or threaten you or harass you or threaten you through someone else, and can order the abuser to not possess any weapons. It is important to remember that a protective order is not a guarantee that the abuser will leave you alone and you should always have a safety plan in place for your protection. We are available to assist you in forming a safety plan for you and your family and can provide referrals to local agencies that can assist with shelter and emergency legal and financial assistance.
A Protective Order is criminally enforceable, meaning that the abuser can be arrested and charged with a criminal offense for violating the order. A Restraining Order can also direct a person to stay away from your home and place of employment and to not be violent with you; however, the police cannot arrest someone for violating a restraining order and you must go back to the judge who issued the restraining order to enforce it.