COLUMBUS—Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) today announced the Ohio Senate passed a bill that will help protect domestic violence victims from offenders who avoid service of a protection order and knowingly violate the terms of the order.

Sponsored by State Senators Kevin Bacon (R-Minerva Park) and Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville), Senate Bill 7 would allow for prosecution in cases where the offender knowingly violated a protection order but did not receive formal service prior to the violation.

"Strengthening this law will give an additional measure of protection to victims of domestic violence," said Obhof, who co-sponsored the bill. "It will stop offenders from using a technicality to evade the reach of the law."

Senate Bill 7 will remedy a problem in current law that was made evident by a recent Ohio Supreme Court decision. In that case, the defendant was convicted of violating a protection order. However, on appeal, the Supreme Court overturned the conviction, ruling that even though the offender was aware of the protection order, he could not be charged with violating the order because he was not formally served by law enforcement prior to breaking into his victim's home. The bill the Senate passed today would ensure that violators of protection orders may be charged if the prosecution can establish that the violator was aware of the order, even if he or she was not yet officially served with the order. 

Senate Bill 7 now goes to the Ohio House of Representatives where it will receive further consideration. 
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