Well, my nightmare is over. I went to court today and dismissed the Order of Protection that I had filed on March 19, 2010, against Neil Zucconi because I was able to obtain what I feel is even better and much longer lasting protection for myself and my family than the Order of Protection provides. (You can find a lot more about this on my other blog, http://orderofprotectionsurvivor.blogspot.com) I dismissed the order in exchange for a stipulated addendum that is now attached to our decree of dissolution of marriage (divorce decree). This stipulated addendum contains provisions that include the fact that Neil Zucconi "shall not come into the State of Arizona for a period of one (1) year, ... and shall have no contact whatsoever with (me) by any means." So, no contact with me -- ever.
More on the legal saga can be found here on this public Maricopa County Superior Court web site.
I feel pretty good about this. It's "forever," whereas an Order of Protection is valid for only one year, at the end of which time, I would have had to go back to court to continue to have it upheld. One drawback to giving up my Order of Protection is the fact that it came with police enforceable protection. I don't have that now that the Order of Protection has been dismissed, however the stipulated addendum of the divorce decree is a fully enforceable order of the court....and if it is ever violated, I can easily go to court to get another Order of Protection.
While I was in court earlier today to take care of the Order of Protection dismissal, I listened to another woman who was there to obtain an Order of Protection of her own. Her story was so sad, as she recounted for the judge the physical abuse that she and her nine-year-old son had experienced at the hand of her boyfriend. And there were other women besides her who were waiting to see the judge to have their Orders of Protection filed as well. This must go on every hour of every day in every court across the country. It's crazy. Thank goodness we have legal protection in place for domestic violence victims such as the young woman who's testimony I heard, but how horrible that women have to resort to it.
This has definitely been an eye-opening and very jolting experience to go through, and if any of my blog readers would like to reach me or to know more about my story, feel free to leave a comment below.