PFA Violations Lead to Criminal Charges

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Jul 27, 2021 | 0 Comments

Perhaps Altoona's Joseph Clark III didn't read the fine print on the Protection From Abuse (PFA) order that a female plaintiff successfully filed against him.

It could be, he didn't understand it the first time he was served. Nor the first time he was hit with a violation. Nor the second, third, or 12th time the plaintiff reported a violation.

Clark was arrested six times for PFA violations in roughly a seven-month span. It should be clear to him now that PFA orders are the law's way of telling you to “stay away”.

Learn From Joseph Clark III: Follow the Terms of a PFA

PFA orders outline specific terms. These terms will determine what constitutes a violation of the PFA order.

Someone beholden to a PFA order is generally prohibited from:

  • Calling the plaintiff who requested the PFA order
  • Texting the plaintiff
  • Contacting the plaintiff through social media
  • Confronting the plaintiff in person
  • Being within a certain geographical proximity to the plaintiff

Compare these prohibitions with Clark's pattern of behavior. He:

  • Was notified of his PFA on August 20, 2020
  • Allegedly called the plaintiff 23 times from one phone number
  • Allegedly called the plaintiff another 9 times from a second phone number
  • Admitted to contacting the plaintiff through Facebook and Snapchat using fake profiles

This is a master class in how not to abide by a PFA.

What Clark Learned: You Can Make a Simple PFA Into Serious Criminal Charges

An alleged violation of a PFA order may be enough for you to face criminal consequences. Violate a PFA order 12 times in 7 months? You're going to have a bad time.

Pennsylvania’s Consolidated Statutes § 6114 lists the possible consequences for a PFA violation. They include

  • A fine ranging between $300 and $1,000
  • Up to six months' imprisonment
  • Supervised probation for up to six months

This may not be the end of your legal troubles. Just consider Clarks' case. In addition to whatever sanctions he faces for PFA violations, he's also racked up four additional (minor) counts of harassment.

Who knows what havoc this has wrought on Clark's life? Being convicted of a PFA violation and other charges—let alone having your case published for all to read—may:

  • Cause you to lose your job
  • Limit your future employment opportunities
  • Affect your child custody status
  • Cause significant financial hardship
  • Affect your ability to travel in and out of the United States without issue
  • Lead to other personal and professional consequences

Clark could be experiencing one or more of these troubles as you read this. Furthermore, the female he's admitted to contacting has reportedly suffered financial loss, distress, and other hardship.

Nobody wins when you violate a PFA.

Get Legal Advice

If you are served with a PFA, a lawyer can help you fight it.

  • You could be falsely accused
  • The PFA order was confusing or improperly worded
  • You had reason to believe the PFA order no longer applied
  • You are deserving of leniency

Do not wait to retain a lawyer. Time could be of the essence.

Hire Joseph D. Lento as Your Defense Attorney

Alleged PFA violations warrant a strong defense. Joseph D. Lento and Lento Law Firm are dedicated to protecting your rights, interests, and freedom. Call us today at 888-535-3686 to discuss your case.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for the futures of his clients in criminal courtrooms in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania as well as in New Jersey and nationwide. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. With unparalleled experience occupying several roles in the criminal justice system outside of being an attorney, Joseph D. Lento can give you valuable behind-the-scenes insight as to what is happening during all phases of the legal process. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, and is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide. In the courtroom and in life, attorney Joseph D. Lento stands up when the bell rings!


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Contact Us Today!

Attorney Joseph D. Lento has more than a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations - the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Allegheny, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Chester, Dauphin, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Schuylkill, and York County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, In New York, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New York's 62 counties. Outside of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance may not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, New York, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.