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Legal Statutes: New Hampshire

UPDATED August 17, 2016

New Hampshire Statutes

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Chapter 173-B. Protection of Persons From Domestic Violence

back to top173-B:10. Protection by Peace Officers.

I. Whenever any peace officer has probable cause to believe that a person has been abused, as defined in RSA 173-B:1, that officer shall use all means within reason to prevent further abuse including, but not limited to:

(a) Confiscating any deadly weapons involved in the alleged domestic abuse and any firearms and ammunition in the defendant's control, ownership, or possession.

(b) Transporting or obtaining transportation for the victim and any child, to a designated place to meet with a domestic violence counselor, local family member, or friend.

(c) Assisting the victim in removing toiletries, medication, clothing, business equipment, and any other items determined by the court.

(d) Giving the victim immediate and written notice of the rights of victims and of the remedies and services available to victims of domestic violence. The written notice shall include a statement substantially as follows:

"If you are the victim of domestic violence and you believe that law enforcement protection is needed for your physical safety, you have the right to request that the officer assist in providing for your safety, including asking for an emergency telephonic order for protection. You may also request that the officer assist you in obtaining from your premises and curtilage, toiletries, medication, clothing, business equipment, and any other items as determined by the court, and in locating and taking you to a local safe place including, but not limited to, a designated meeting place to be used as a crisis center, a family member's or friend's residence, or a similar place of safety. If you are in need of medical treatment, you have the right to request that the officer assist you in obtaining an ambulance. You may request a copy of the report filed by the peace officer, at no cost, from the law enforcement department."

II. Pursuant to RSA 594:10, an arrest for abuse may be made without a warrant upon probable cause, whether or not the abuse is committed in the presence of the peace officer. When the peace officer has probable cause to believe that the persons are committing or have committed abuse against each other, the officer need not arrest both persons, but should arrest the person the officer believes to be the primary physical aggressor. In determining who is the primary physical aggressor, an officer shall consider the intent of this chapter to protect the victims of domestic violence, the relative degree of injury or fear inflicted on the persons involved, and any history of domestic abuse between these persons if that history can reasonably be obtained by the officer.

Source. 1999, 240:3, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.