Virginia, 77, didn’t want to admit that she needed protection – especially not from her own daughter. She may have suffered in silence had NH Legal Assistance attorney Kay Drought not called her to check in on a prior domestic abuse case.
The timing was good. A few weeks after Kay’s call, the governor issued a stay-at-home order that meant Virginia could have been trapped at home with her daughter. Kay learned that Virginia’s daughter had shoved her twice recently, both times sending her to the ground. Virginia suffered a serious eye injury when she hit her head on a table. And, because Virginia couldn’t get up on her own, she had to push herself to a neighbor’s condo for help.
Kay was so concerned about Virginia’s safety, she arranged to have the police escort Virginia to the Strafford County Family Justice Center. From there, Virginia got help from HAVEN, the local domestic violence shelter, to complete a domestic violence petition.
“It was hard to do a restraining order,” Virginia said. “But…I couldn’t take it anymore. It was horrible.”
Kay represented Virginia in court on the domestic violence case. Her daughter denied the abuse but admitted she had left her mother on the floor after one assault.
The judge issued a final protective order that required Virginia’s daughter to remain out of the condo and prohibits her from contacting Virginia. Today, Virginia remains in her condo, lives alone, and feels safe.
“I was very happy to see how New Hampshire’s domestic violence laws protected this very vulnerable elder,” Kay said. “I am so glad to know that Virginia once again has peace in her own home.”