Abuse and the Internet, a whole new look at Domestic Violence in New Jersey
Each year thousands and thousands of people filed domestic violence complaints in the New Jersey courts. It is easy to see domestic violence when you have a victim that has physical injuries clearly before you. It is not as easy to see violence when the injuries are emotional and the abuse came in the form of words, emails or texts. More and more abusers are using multimedia to attack their victims. Facebook, MySpace, Twitter as well as multiple chat applications are being used as perfect avenues to torment victims. Abusers can stalk without even leaving their homes, they can post messages on their victim’s message boards, send texts to their friends and family and even contact their employers. Not all of these actions are easily traceable as there are now applications that permanently delete your messages within a short period of time, making it harder for victims to prove what has happened to them. Photo messaging applications like SnapChat allow users to send images to other people and have those images disappear within a proscribed amount of time.
The internet and media sites are now being used as a method of spying on people without them knowing. Some sites, like LinkedIn allow users to know who has looked at their profile, but popular sites such as Facebook do not have the same feature. Privacy settings can limit the information that is accessible to random viewers but not everyone is aware of these privacy settings and there are always ways around them.
Family courts in New Jersey are now facing a new array of domestic violence cases which have no bruises, pictures or injuries. Complaints are now being based on messages posted on social networks, photos shared and text messages being sent. This forces the court to go beyond what it is used to when handling domestic violence cases. It is important for the court to understand that these messages have the same effect on their victim as physical violence. It is also important for counsel on both sides to be able understand the multitude of ways messages can be sent and received and be able to support their cases. Not every message sent is enough to satisfy the Domestic Violence statute and that is why is so crucial to have an experienced attorney guiding you through the process.
If you have been a victim of domestic violence or you have been accused of domestic violence, do not hesitate to call us at 201-880-5563 to speak with one of our experienced attorneys.