28-311.11. Sexual assault protection order; violation; penalty; procedure; renewal; enforcement.

(1) Any victim of a sexual assault offense may file a petition and affidavit for a sexual assault protection order as provided in subsection (3) of this section. Upon the filing of such a petition and affidavit in support thereof, the court may issue a sexual assault protection order without bond enjoining the respondent from (a) imposing any restraint upon the person or liberty of the petitioner, (b) harassing, threatening, assaulting, molesting, attacking, or otherwise disturbing the peace of the petitioner, or (c) telephoning, contacting, or otherwise communicating with the petitioner. The sexual assault protection order shall specify to whom relief under this section was granted.

(2) The petition for a sexual assault protection order shall state the events and dates or approximate dates of acts constituting the sexual assault offense, including the most recent and most severe incident or incidents.

(3) A petition for a sexual assault protection order shall be filed with the clerk of the district court and the proceeding may be heard by the county court or the district court as provided in section 25-2740.

(4) A petition for a sexual assault protection order may not be withdrawn except upon order of the court. A sexual assault protection order shall specify that it is effective for a period of one year unless renewed pursuant to subsection (12) of this section or otherwise dismissed or modified by the court. Any person, except the petitioner, who knowingly violates a sexual assault protection order after service or notice as described in subdivision (9)(b) of this section shall be guilty of a Class I misdemeanor, except that any person convicted of violating such order who has a prior conviction for violating a sexual assault protection order shall be guilty of a Class IV felony.

(5)(a) Fees to cover costs associated with the filing of a petition for issuance or renewal of a sexual assault protection order or the issuance or service of a sexual assault protection order seeking only the relief provided by this section shall not be charged, except that a court may assess such fees and costs if the court finds, by clear and convincing evidence, that the statements contained in the petition were false and that the sexual assault protection order was sought in bad faith.

(b) A court may also assess costs associated with the filing of a petition for issuance or renewal of a sexual assault protection order or the issuance or service of a sexual assault protection order seeking only the relief provided by this section against the respondent.

(6) The clerk of the district court shall make available standard application and affidavit forms for issuance and renewal of a sexual assault protection order with instructions for completion to be used by a petitioner. Affidavit forms shall request all relevant information, including, but not limited to: A description of the most recent incident that was the basis for the application for a sexual assault protection order and the date or approximate date of the incident and, if there was more than one incident, the most severe incident and the date or approximate date of such incident. The clerk and his or her employees shall not provide assistance in completing the forms. The State Court Administrator shall adopt and promulgate the standard application and affidavit forms provided for in this section as well as the standard temporary ex parte and final sexual assault protection order forms and provide a copy of such forms to all clerks of the district courts in this state. Such standard temporary ex parte and final sexual assault protection order forms shall be the only forms used in this state.

(7) A sexual assault protection order may be issued or renewed ex parte without notice to the respondent if it reasonably appears from the specific facts shown by affidavit of the petitioner that irreparable harm, loss, or damage will result before the matter can be heard on notice. If a sexual assault protection order is not issued ex parte, the court shall immediately schedule an evidentiary hearing to be held within fourteen days after the filing of the petition, and the court shall cause notice of the application to be given to the respondent stating that he or she may show cause why such order should not be entered. Any notice provided to the respondent shall include notification that a court may treat a petition for a sexual assault protection order as a petition for a harassment protection order or a domestic abuse protection order if it appears from the facts that such other protection order is more appropriate and that the respondent shall have an opportunity to show cause as to why such protection order should not be entered. If such ex parte order is issued or renewed without notice to the respondent, the court shall forthwith cause notice of the petition and order and a form with which to request a show-cause hearing to be given the respondent stating that, upon service on the respondent, the order shall remain in effect for a period of one year unless the respondent shows cause why the order should not remain in effect for a period of one year. If the respondent wishes to appear and show cause why the order should not remain in effect for a period of one year, he or she shall affix his or her current address, telephone number, and signature to the form and return it to the clerk of the district court within ten business days after service upon him or her. Upon receipt of a timely request for a show-cause hearing, the court shall immediately schedule a show-cause hearing to be held within thirty days after the receipt of the request for a show-cause hearing and shall notify the petitioner and respondent of the hearing date. The petition and affidavit shall be deemed to have been offered into evidence at any show-cause hearing. The petition and affidavit shall be admitted into evidence unless specifically excluded by the court.

(8) A court may treat a petition for a sexual assault protection order as a petition for a harassment protection order or a domestic abuse protection order if it appears from the facts in the petition, affidavit, and evidence presented at a show-cause hearing that such other protection order is more appropriate and if:

(a) The court makes specific findings that such other order is more appropriate; or

(b) The petitioner has requested the court to so treat the petition.

(9)(a) Upon the issuance or renewal of any temporary ex parte or final sexual assault protection order, the clerk of the court shall forthwith provide the petitioner, without charge, with two certified copies of such order. The clerk of the court shall also forthwith provide the local police department or local law enforcement agency and the local sheriff's office, without charge, with one copy each of such order and one copy each of the sheriff's return thereon. The clerk of the court shall also forthwith provide a copy of the sexual assault protection order to the sheriff's office in the county where the respondent may be personally served together with instructions for service. Upon receipt of the order and instructions for service, such sheriff's office shall forthwith serve the sexual assault protection order upon the respondent and file its return thereon with the clerk of the court which issued the sexual assault protection order within fourteen days of the issuance of the initial or renewed sexual assault protection order. If any sexual assault protection order is dismissed or modified by the court, the clerk of the court shall forthwith provide the local police department or local law enforcement agency and the local sheriff's office, without charge, with one copy each of the order of dismissal or modification.

(b) If the respondent is present at a hearing convened pursuant to this section and the sexual assault protection order is not dismissed, such respondent shall be deemed to have notice by the court at such hearing that the protection order will be granted and remain in effect and further service of such notice described in this subsection shall not be required for purposes of prosecution under this section.

(c) A temporary ex parte sexual assault protection order shall be affirmed and deemed the final protection order and service of the temporary ex parte order shall be notice of the final protection order if the respondent has been properly served with the ex parte order and:

(i) The respondent fails to request a show-cause hearing within ten business days after service upon him or her and no hearing was requested by the petitioner or upon the court's own motion;

(ii) The respondent has been properly served with notice of any hearing requested by the respondent or petitioner or upon the court's own motion and the respondent fails to appear at such hearing; or

(iii) The respondent has been properly served with notice of any hearing requested by the respondent, the petitioner, or upon the court's own motion and the protection order was not dismissed at the hearing.

(10) A peace officer shall, with or without a warrant, arrest a person if (a) the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has committed a violation of a sexual assault protection order issued pursuant to this section or a violation of a valid foreign sexual assault protection order recognized pursuant to section 28-311.12 and (b) a petitioner under this section provides the peace officer with a copy of such order or the peace officer determines that such an order exists after communicating with the local law enforcement agency.

(11) A peace officer making an arrest pursuant to subsection (10) of this section shall take such person into custody and take such person before the county court or the court which issued the sexual assault protection order within a reasonable time. At such time the court shall establish the conditions of such person's release from custody, including the determination of bond or recognizance, as the case may be. The court shall issue an order directing that such person shall have no contact with the alleged victim of the sexual assault offense.

(12)(a) An order issued under subsection (1) of this section may be renewed annually. To request renewal of the order, the petitioner shall file a petition for renewal and affidavit in support thereof at any time within forty-five days prior to the date the order is set to expire, including the date the order expires.

(b) A sexual assault protection order may be renewed on the basis of the petitioner's affidavit stating that there has been no material change in relevant circumstances since entry of the order and stating the reason for the requested renewal if:

(i) The petitioner seeks no modification of the order; and

(ii)(A) The respondent has been properly served with notice of the petition for renewal and notice of hearing and fails to appear at the hearing; or

(B) The respondent indicates that he or she does not contest the renewal.

(c) The petition for renewal shall state the reasons a renewal is sought and shall be filed with the clerk of the district court, and the proceeding thereon may be heard by the county court or the district court as provided in section 25-2740. A petition for renewal will otherwise be governed in accordance with the procedures set forth in subsections (4) through (11) of this section. The renewed order shall specify that it is effective for one year commencing on the first calendar day after expiration of the previous order or on the calendar day the court grants the renewal if such day is subsequent to the first calendar day after expiration of the previous order.

(13) When provided by the petitioner, the court shall make confidential numeric victim identification information, including social security numbers and dates of birth, available to appropriate criminal justice agencies engaged in protection order enforcement efforts. Such agencies shall maintain the confidentiality of this information, except for entry into state and federal data bases for protection order enforcement.

(14) For purposes of this section, sexual assault offense means:

(a) Conduct amounting to sexual assault under section 28-319 or 28-320 or sexual assault of a child under section 28-319.01 or 28-320.01 or an attempt to commit any of such offenses; or

(b) Subjecting or attempting to subject another person to sexual contact or sexual penetration without his or her consent, as such terms are defined in section 28-318.

Source:Laws 2017, LB289, § 4; Laws 2019, LB532, § 2.
Operative Date: January 1, 2020