Restraining Orders / Harassment Prevention FAQ

My ex-boyfriend has been very threatening toward me. How do I get a restraining order?

If you need a 209A Restraining Order and the Gloucester District Court at 197 Main Street in Gloucester is open (Monday-Friday 8:30am - 4:00 pm), please go directly to the Court and the staff in the Clerk’s Office will assist you. If the situation is an emergency and the Court is closed, please come into the Essex Police Department and speak with an officer, who will assist you with the proper paper work and judicial notifications. In the event that you are in imminent danger, call 911. An officer will be dispatched to your location to speak with you. In some circumstances, a temporary restraining can be issued at the scene by an on-call judge. Once you receive a restraining order, keep a copy near or with you at all times in the event the defendant attempts to contact or harm you.

I started a new job recently and a new co-worker has been harassing me. Can I get a 209A Restraining Order against her?

In the event that you are being harassed by someone that you are not related to, have never lived with nor had any sort of relationship with, you would not qualify for a 209A Restraining Order, but may qualify for a 258E Harassment Prevention Order. Gloucester District Court and the Essex Police Department can guide you in this process.

What can I do about the annoying or harassing phone calls I have been receiving?

If you are receiving annoying, harassing telephone calls, the police department should be called because making such calls is against the law. An officer will speak with you and provide you with an "incident number" that your carrier will need. Call your carrier and request to speak with a representative from their Annoyance Call Bureau. Your phone carrier will give you detailed instructions on handling further calls and then will attempt to determine the origin of the calls. Once the location of the calls had been identified, the phone carrier will notify the Essex Police and an officer will investigate the incident. The Verizon "Unlawful Call Center" can be reached at 1-877-TRACE4U (1-877-872-2348).