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Legal Information: South Dakota

Restraining Orders

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November 28, 2023

A civil order that protects victims who were injured or stalked by a non-family member or non-household member.

What is a protection order against stalking, physical injury, or a crime of violence?

If your relationship does not meet the requirements to obtain a domestic violence protection order, you may be able to file for a protection order against stalking, physical injury, or a crime of violence. This means that you can get one against anyone who is stalking you or physically injuring you. This includes neighbors, friends, landlords, tenants, coworkers, or other people who are not “family or household members.”

In order to qualify for this protection order, you must be the victim of stalking or physically injured as a result of an assault or a “crime of violence,” as defined below.

Stalking is when a person:

  • follows or harasses you in a willful and malicious manner more than once and the harassment seriously alarms or annoys you; or
  • makes threats against you with the intent to make you fearful of great bodily harm.1

Crime of violence is when the one of the following crimes is committed against you:

  • murder;
  • manslaughter;
  • rape;
  • criminal pedophilia, which is sexual penetration of a victim less than thirteen years of age by any person twenty-six years of age or older;
  • aggravated assault;
  • riot;
  • robbery;
  • burglary;
  • arson;
  • kidnapping;
  • felony sexual contact, which includes:
    • sexual contact by someone over the age of 16 against someone under the age of 16; or
    • certain types of incest;
  • felony child abuse;
  • any other felony that involves the use of force, a dangerous weapon, or an explosive or destructive device.2

Note: A victim of stalking or a crime of violence is eligible to file for a protection order whether or not the police were contacted or criminal charges were pressed.3

1 SDCL § 22-19A-1
2 SDCL § 22-1-2(9)
3 SDCL § 22-19A-8(3)

What protections can I get in this type of protection order?

A stalking or physical injury order can last for up to five years and can:

  • order that the abuser avoid all personal contact with you;
  • order that the abuser move out of and/or stay away from your home, business, school or other locations;
  • order that the abuser stop all harassing, threatening and violent behavior;
  • forbid the abuser from owning, possessing or buying firearms; and
  • grant any other measures that the court sees as reasonable and necessary to protect you.1

Whether a judge orders any or all of the above depends on the facts of your case.

To file for a stalking or physical injury protection order, you must go to a court in your area and file an application.  The process to obtain a stalking or physical injury protection order is very similar to the steps for getting a domestic violence protection order.  Although the process will be similar, the forms you fill out may be different.  A court clerk can help you get the paperwork you need.

1 SDCL § 22-19A-11