Former NFL running back Frank Gore was charged with simple assault over an incident that occurred in Atlantic City in July. Allegedly, it was a domestic violence incident between Gore and an unnamed 28-year-old woman that took place at the Tropicana Atlantic City. Police were called to the scene, although no complaints were made right away.
However, court documents obtained by TMZ claim that Gore grabbed a woman by her hair while she was naked and “violently” dragged her across the hallway of her hotel room. The woman was speaking with hotel security when police arrived, but as she apparently exhibited no signs of injury, no arrest was made. Gore has a court hearing scheduled for mid-October.
What Is Considered Domestic Violence in New Jersey?
No arrest was made at the scene when the incident with Gore supposedly occurred. Police don't have to make an arrest if the alleged victim of domestic abuse doesn't show signs of injury. It's also important to note that Gore wasn't charged with a crime of domestic violence but of simple assault. Domestic violence can refer to several crimes, including stalking, rape, homicide, harassment, sexual assault, and more.
What makes the crime one of domestic violence, then? The alleged victim must have a certain relationship with the alleged perpetrator. They must be either current or former spouses, current or former household members, share a child, or be involved in a dating or intimate relationship. Given that the woman was reportedly nude when the alleged incident with Frank Gore occurred, it would be reasonable to suspect there was an intimate relationship between the two parties.
Domestic Violence and Restraining Orders
When the police arrive at the scene of a domestic violence incident, it may not always result in an arrest. Gore was later charged with a crime, but he is still free to walk the streets and potentially contact or meet with the unnamed 28-year-old woman again. If she had wanted protection from Gore right away, she could have filed for a temporary restraining order (TRO).
A TRO would have legally protected her from being contacted by Gore, either directly or through someone else. It also would have taken effect almost immediately, as soon as the judge signed the order. She could have filed for the TRO even without Gore being present, and it still would have taken effect. A TRO lasts ten days, and then there's a hearing for a final restraining order (FRO), which both parties must be at. If a FRO is granted, it's permanent.
A restraining order is a civil matter in New Jersey, and it's still valid across state lines. If the woman involved in the Tropicana Atlantic City incident had chosen to file for a restraining order against Gore, he would not have been charged with a crime, but he would have legally had to stay away from her — no matter where she went.
Get a Domestic Violence Lawyer Who's on Your Side
When dealing with a domestic violence issue, like whether to file for a restraining order or press criminal charges, it can be tough to know what the best thing to do is. That's true for both alleged victims and those who are accused of domestic violence. Working with an experienced domestic violence attorney can help you better understand your situation. Contact Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm by calling 888-535-3686 with your questions about domestic violence and restraining orders.