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Legal Information: U.S. Virgin Islands

Statutes: Virgin Islands, U.S.

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Updated: 
December 2, 2019

91. Definitions

As used in this chapter, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

(a) “Cohabitants” means emancipated minors or persons 18 years of age or older of the opposite sex who have resided together or who currently are residing in the same living quarters or persons who together are the parents of one or more children, regardless of their marital status or whether they have lived together at any time.

(b) “Domestic violence” means the occurrence of any of the following acts, attempts or threats against a person who may be protected under this chapter pursuant to subsection (c) of this section:

(1) Assault;
(2) Battery;
(3) Burglary;
(4) Kidnapping;
(5) Unlawful sexual contact;
(6) Rape;
(7) Forcible or unlawful entry;
(8) Coercion;
(9) Destruction of property;
(10) Harassment;
(11) Threats;
(12) False imprisonment; or
(13) Stalking.
(14) Violation of a restraining order issued pursuant to section 97(b)(2) or section 98 of this chapter.

(c) “Victim” includes any person who has been subjected to domestic violence by a spouse, former spouse, parent, child, or any other person related by blood or marriage, a present or former household member, a person with whom the victim has a child in common, or a person who is, or has been, in a sexual or otherwise intimate relationship with the victim.

(d) “Coercion” means compelling another by force, or threat of force, to engage in conduct from which the latter has a right to abstain, or to abstain from conduct in which the person has a right to engage.

(e) “Destruction of property” means causing damage to the property of another, or to property jointly owned by the perpetrator and another.

(f) “Harassment” means engaging in a purposeful, knowing or reckless course of conduct involving more than one incident that alarms, or causes distress to another person and serves no legitimate purpose. The course of conduct must be such as would cause a reasonable person to suffer distress and must actually cause distress. Such conduct shall include, but shall not be limited to:

(1) following another about in a public place or places with the intent to distress or intimidate the victim;
(2) peering in the window, or trespassing or coming upon or about the premises of the victim so as to intrude on privacy or create a menacing or threatening situation.