In this sec­tion we will be covering:























When call­ing 911, please try to stay calm. We under­stand that you are call­ing because some­thing bad has hap­pened, but stay­ing calm allows the dis­patch­er to hear you and under­stand you bet­ter. The dis­patch­er will ask you a series of ques­tions to include ‘What is your name?’, ‘Where is this occur­ring?’, and ‘What is a call back num­ber for you’. Oth­er ques­tions will be spe­cif­ic to the sit­u­a­tion you are call­ing about.

Dis­patch­ers are trained to ask ques­tions relat­ed to the inci­dent they are send­ing first respon­ders to. They have not delayed send­ing you help by ask­ing these ques­tions, but these ques­tions help ensure that they have sent the cor­rect assis­tance, and lev­el of assis­tance to you or your loved ones.


Evic­tion is the process by which a land­lord obtains pos­ses­sion of the rental prop­er­ty by enter­ing a law­suit against the tenant(s) and receiv­ing judg­ment from the court direct­ing the tenant(s) to leave the prop­er­ty and pay back any rent, dam­age claims and costs of the court process. Fol­low­ing are the steps a land­lord must take in the evic­tion process.  Click to down­load this infor­ma­tion as well as sam­ple 5 and 30 Day Notice forms.

Step 1: Notice to Tenant(s)

(Referred to here­in as “Ten­ant” whether sin­gu­lar or plural)

5‑day let­ter (Non­pay­ment Notice) for mon­ey-relat­ed issues. This notice is used for fail­ure to pay rent. The land­lord gives the ten­ant writ­ten notice that rent must be paid with­in four­teen days of ser­vice date or ten­ant must vacate the premis­es. Ten­ant has 5 days after receipt of notice to respond.


Mate­r­i­al Non­com­pli­ance Notice for fail­ure to fol­low the terms of the lease or fail­ure to fol­low the terms of the Vir­ginia Res­i­den­tial Land­lord and Ten­ant Act (VRLTA). Code of Vir­ginia §§55.1–1200 to 55.1–1262. With this type of notice the land­lord gives the ten­ant writ­ten notice to vacate the premis­es with­in 30 days of service.

If a land­lord requests Sheriff’s Ser­vice for Notice to Ten­ant, the notice must include:

The name of the individual(s) to be served and the address of the rental prop­er­ty. The orig­i­nal notice for return to land­lord, plus a copy for each indi­vid­ual being served. Self-addressed, stamped enve­lope to send back landlord’s proof of ser­vice. A $12.00 ser­vice fee for each indi­vid­ual being served.

Step 2: Sum­mons for Unlaw­ful Detain­er

VA Code § 8.01–126

  1. If the ten­ant does not com­ply with the notice, the land­lord brings proof of the notice to the Gen­er­al Dis­trict Court to obtain a Sum­mons for Unlaw­ful Detain­er, which is a civ­il claim for eviction.
  2. The court issues a Sum­mons for Unlaw­ful Detain­er and assigns a date when the land­lord and ten­ant have an oppor­tu­ni­ty to appear.
  3. If the Judge rules in favor of the land­lord (Plain­tiff), the ten­ant (Defen­dant) is grant­ed a 10-day appeal period.

Step 3: Writ of Evic­tion in Unlaw­ful Detain­er Proceedings 

VA Code § 8.01–471, 8.01–470, 8.01–472

  1. After the 10-day appeal peri­od, the plain­tiff files a Request for Writ of Evic­tion in Unlaw­ful Detain­er Pro­ceed­ings with the clerk of the Gen­er­al Dis­trict Court.
  2. The court sends the Writ of Evic­tion for the plain­tiff to the Sheriff’s Office.
  3. The Sheriff’s Office has 30 days from the court’s sign­ing to exe­cute the doc­u­ment. The Sheriff’s Office con­tacts the plain­tiff with the sched­uled date and time of the eviction.
  4. The defen­dant is giv­en a min­i­mum of 72 hours’ notice pri­or to the sched­uled eviction. 

Step 4: Evic­tion

There are two types of Evic­tion: 

  1. Full Evic­tion – The defen­dan­t’s prop­er­ty, in its entire­ty, is placed on the near­est pub­lic right of way. The plain­tiff must pro­vide a lock­smith and enough adults deemed nec­es­sary by the Sheriff’s Office to exe­cute the evic­tion. The Sher­if­f’s Office is respon­si­ble for pro­tect­ing the inter­ests of both par­ties. Depend­ing on the par­tic­u­lar cir­cum­stances, the Sher­if­f’s Office may require the plain­tiff to pro­vide a mov­ing truck, box­es and bags, and/or spe­cial equip­ment. In cas­es of inclement weath­er or unfore­seen cir­cum­stances, the Sher­if­f’s Office reserves the right to post­pone the evic­tion to the next avail­able date.


  2. 24-Hour Lock Change Evic­tion – This is the most com­mon­ly used evic­tion because it is far less cost­ly than a Full Evic­tion. Pos­ses­sion of the dwelling is grant­ed to the plain­tiff with­in 24 hours after the sched­uled evic­tion date and time. On evic­tion day, the plain­tiff must pro­vide a lock­smith to change all of the locks on exte­ri­or entrances to the dwelling. The dwelling becomes a stor­age facil­i­ty for the defen­dan­t’s prop­er­ty for the next 24 hours. The plain­tiff must grant the defen­dant rea­son­able access to remove his or her prop­er­ty dur­ing that 24 hour peri­od. The defen­dant can­not stay in the dwelling overnight. At the end of the 24 hour peri­od, any prop­er­ty left in the dwelling goes into the pos­ses­sion of the plain­tiff who must sell or destroy it. If the defen­dant remains on the prop­er­ty or returns to the prop­er­ty after the 24 hour peri­od expires, the defen­dant is trespassing.

For more infor­ma­tion about fill­ing fees at the War­ren Coun­ty Gen­er­al Dis­trict Court please con­tact them at 540–635-2335.

All evic­tion infor­ma­tion is sub­ject to change. The War­ren Coun­ty Sher­if­f’s Office will fol­low the guide­lines from local, state, and fed­er­al orders. These orders may include but not lim­it­ed to the Pres­i­dent of the Unit­ed States, Gov­er­nor of Vir­ginia, and/or any judge (Fed­er­al or Vir­ginia). We will also fol­low the guid­ance of the Com­mon­wealth Attorney.


Have a friend­ly neigh­bor­hood bear prob­lem? We know part of the ben­e­fit of liv­ing in an envi­ron­ment so close to a nature reserve such as the Shenan­doah Nation­al Park is the beau­ti­ful wildlife, but for both your safe­ty and your fur­ry neigh­bors, Be Bear Aware!

Don’t feed the bears!

By tak­ing away food sources like trash cans left out or unse­cured, bird feed­ers or even your pets food, you min­i­mize the appeal for a bear to near your home.  Feed­ing of bears is a vio­la­tion of law, see Code of Vir­ginia sec­tions 4VAC15-40–286 and 4VAC5-30–422.

Please take a moment to review the  Vir­ginia Depart­ment of Wildlife Resources (for­mer­ly known as Vir­ginia Game War­den or Vir­ginia Game and Inland Fish­eries — DGIF) poli­cies and infor­ma­tion.  You’ll find facts and infor­ma­tion­al tips on how to deter bears near your homehow to bear-proof your trash con­tain­ers and the plans and poli­cies for bear man­age­ment



The appli­cant must obtain and com­plete an Appli­ca­tion for Con­cealed Hand­gun Per­mit. Appli­ca­tions are locat­ed at the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office and at the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court Clerk’s Office or it can be down­loaded here

The appli­cant must be at least 21 years of age and pro­vide doc­u­men­ta­tion that he/she has demon­strat­ed com­pe­tence with a handgun. 

Once the appli­ca­tion has been com­plet­ed, the appli­ca­tion along with pay­ment to the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court may be sub­mit­ted by mail or in per­son to the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court Clerk’s Office, 1 E. Main Street, Front Roy­al, VA 22630. If you have any ques­tions please direct them to the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court Clerk’s Office, (540) 635‑4107.

A back­ground check will then be per­formed by the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office and  infor­ma­tion obtained from the back­ground check is for­ward­ed to the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court Clerk’s Office. 

The appli­ca­tion will then be reviewed by the Cir­cuit Court Judge. The Judge will make a deci­sion to approve or deny the permit. 

Once the process has been com­plet­ed, the appli­cant will be con­tact­ed by the War­ren Coun­ty Cir­cuit Court Clerk’s Office.  For more infor­ma­tion vis­it the Vir­ginia State Police web­site.


To view a list of cur­rent open posi­tions, vis­it the War­ren Coun­ty Gov­ern­ment Employ­ment Oppor­tu­ni­ties Page.  Please make sure that you are look­ing at the Sheriff’s Office posi­tions and not all Coun­ty posi­tions.  Appli­cants for Com­mu­ni­ca­tions must be 18 years of age and have a high school diplo­ma and valid driver’s license.  Appli­cants for Deputy posi­tions must be 21 years of age and have a min­i­mum of a high school diplo­ma and a valid driver’s license.

To apply to the War­ren Coun­ty Sher­if­f’s Office, please com­plete and nota­rize our Employ­ment Appli­ca­tion Pack­et and return

War­ren Coun­ty Sher­if­f’s Office
Attn: Admin­is­tra­tive Ser­vices Man­ag­er
200 Sky­line Vista Dri­ve
Front Roy­al, VA 22630

We do not accept appli­ca­tions by email. Our pack­et requires your sig­na­ture and the sig­na­ture of a notary for the release, and we must have the orig­i­nal sig­na­ture. Also, it is impor­tant that you pro­vide the doc­u­men­ta­tion out­lined in the instruc­tions which include your diplo­ma or tran­script of your grades, a DD 214 if you are or have been in the mil­i­tary and any cer­tifi­cates you may have.

If you click on the appli­ca­tion and it allows you to “sub­mit” online you are not using the cor­rect appli­ca­tion. There is a dif­fer­ent appli­ca­tion for the Coun­ty than there is for the Sheriff’s Office. Please make sure you are using the cor­rect appli­ca­tion. If you have any ques­tions or need assis­tance you can pick up the appli­ca­tion in per­son at the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office or you can call 540–635-7243.


The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office pro­vides fin­ger­print­ing ser­vices Mon­day through Fri­day from 8:30 am – 3:30 pm exclud­ing hol­i­days. Fin­ger­print­ing is done at the old War­ren Coun­ty Jail at 8 East Jack­son Street. The entrance is locat­ed at the rear of the Cour­t­house. A gov­ern­ment issued pho­to ID is required to obtain prints. There is no charge for the fin­ger­print­ing service.

For any addi­tion­al assis­tance please con­tact War­ren Coun­ty Court Hold at 540–635-3100.


Spring Wild­fire Sea­son begins Feb­ru­ary 15th each year and con­tin­ues through April 30th.

As a safe­ty pre­cau­tion, open air burn­ing is restrict­ed to only the hours of 4pm-12 mid­night. Once wild­fire sea­son con­cludes, open air burn­ing is no longer restrict­ed and you may burn at any time (unless oth­er­wise post­ed). For more infor­ma­tion on what you are allowed to burn, please vis­it http://www.dof.virginia.gov/

Please con­tact the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office pri­or to start­ing your burn and with any fur­ther questions.


Do not pro­vide your per­son­al infor­ma­tion to a stranger over the phone or inter­net. Con­tact this office, at 540–635-4128, opt 0, if you believe you are the vic­tim or tar­get of a scam. 

There are cur­rent­ly sev­er­al scams in cir­cu­la­tion through­out the area. The most pop­u­lar scams tend to focus on jobs, gov­ern­ment imposters, pup­pies, cryp­tocur­ren­cy, fake checks, and sweepstakes/lottery/prizes. If imme­di­ate action needs to be tak­en, there is a pro­found since of urgency, or a request for mon­ey to be trans­ferred to a gift card or cryp­tocur­ren­cy, it is prob­a­bly a scam. 

The fol­low­ing links allow for the search and/or report­ing of scams, as well as obtain­ing a scam risk report:

Scam Track­er — https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker

BBB scam risk report — https://bbbfoundation.images.worldnow.com/library/8923baa8-e503-45c9-9f2c-c57995ed4a2e.pdf

BBB Spot­ting a scam — https://www.bbb.org/all/spot-a-scam

Fed­er­al Trade Com­mis­sion — https://consumer.ftc.gov/


Wel­come to Cit­i­zen Con­nect! Cit­i­zen Con­nect is the place to go when you are look­ing for infor­ma­tion regard­ing inci­dents, acci­dents, miss­ing and want­ed per­sons, and more. Please be aware that some infor­ma­tion is redact­ed or has not been made avail­able to the public.

Infor­ma­tion is updat­ed every 24 hrs. This does not mean that your inci­dent or acci­dent will be avail­able that quick­ly. There is a process that all reports must go through before they are able to be loaded to Cit­i­zen Con­nect.

To find a copy of a crash report, please go to the sec­tion labeled Acci­dent Search. For an inci­dent report, please go to the sec­tion labeled inci­dent search.
For the Dai­ly Reports func­tion, please go to the sec­tion labeled Dai­ly Report. Dai­ly Report is an option to view all report­ed activ­i­ty over the pre­vi­ous 5 days. You can see Inci­dents, arrests, Miss­ing Per­sons, and accidents.

Link to Cit­i­zen Connect


When mak­ing a request for records from the War­ren Coun­ty Sherriff’s Office the fol­low­ing applies:
• You may request records by U.S. Mail, fax, e‑mail, in per­son, or over the phone. FOIA does not require your request to be in writ­ing, and you do not need to use the term FOIA. How­ev­er, it is help­ful to have the request in writ­ing. This pro­vides a clear under­stand­ing of the request­ed records so there is no mis­un­der­stand­ing.
• Your request must iden­ti­fy the records with “rea­son­able speci­fici­ty”. The more spe­cif­ic the request the bet­ter. If there is a ques­tion regard­ing your request, we will con­tact you for clar­i­fi­ca­tion.
• Your request must be for exist­ing records or doc­u­ments. FOIA gives the requestor the right to inspect or copy records. We are not required to cre­ate a record that does not exist.
• The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office can charge a rea­son­able fee for the actu­al cost to pro­vide the request­ed records. You may request an esti­mate for the cost.
• The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office has 5 busi­ness days to respond to your request after it has been received by the FOIA Offi­cer. The 5 busi­ness days do not include week­ends or hol­i­days.
• All requests are reviewed on an indi­vid­ual basis and are not released at the time of the request.
• You may choose to receive the request­ed records by the fol­low­ing means: pick-up, mail, email, or fax.
Requests can be made through one of the fol­low­ing:
phone (540) 636‑5914 or (540) 635‑2074; fax (540) 622‑6819
Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Offi­cers, phone (540) 635‑4128, option 0

War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office
Attn: FOIA Offi­cer
200 Sky­line Vista Dri­ve
Front Roy­al, VA 22630

Link to Free­dom of Infor­ma­tion Act Request Pack­et
Link to Rights & Respon­si­bil­i­ties (cur­rent­ly part of the FOIA request link pages 3–8)
Link to FOIA Pub­lic Com­ment Form 


Acci­dent reports can be request­ed through the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office or can be accessed using Cit­i­zen Con­nect or Crash­Docs.

For a Crash­Docs report, please go to http://www.crashdocs.org/ to get your report.

Acci­dent reports are not imme­di­ate­ly avail­able on Crash­Docs. To uti­lize Crash­Docs, you will need to know the acci­dent date, report num­ber and last name of the driver.

Acci­dent reports are only released upon super­vi­sor approval.


The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office does not com­plete back­ground checks or crim­i­nal his­to­ry checks for the public.

We can com­plete an in-house, local back­ground check for oth­er law enforce­ment and gov­ern­ment enti­ties with a signed release.

Cit­i­zens may request a back­ground check (crim­i­nal his­to­ry) check through Vir­ginia State Police. You can vis­it Civ­il and Appli­cant Records Exchange (CARE) — Vir­ginia State Police for more infor­ma­tion on obtain­ing a back­ground check through VSP.


Why doesn’t the Sheriff’s Office allow com­ments on Face­book?  Face­book is a social media out­let that allows the shar­ing of infor­ma­tion from the Sheriff’s Office to the pub­lic.  How­ev­er, fre­quent­ly peo­ple will send in tips, com­plaints, com­ments, infor­ma­tion, etc. request­ing law enforce­ment response.  To pre­vent these com­ments, tips, infor­ma­tion, etc. from being over­looked or lost we have decid­ed it is in the best inter­est of the pub­lic and com­mu­ni­ty we serve to turn the com­ment por­tion off. 

Why can’t you send a Face­book Mes­sage to the Sheriff’s Office?  Again, peo­ple were using mes­sen­ger instead of call­ing 911 or uti­liz­ing the tip line.  Face­book can­not be mon­i­tored 24/7 by a Deputy and to con­tin­ue to bring the best pos­si­ble response to our com­mu­ni­ty we had to turn off the mes­sen­ger abil­i­ty.  Addi­tion­al­ly, most of our com­ments, tips, com­plaints, etc. did not relate to our office, but to mul­ti­ple War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office’s up and down the east coast.


The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office does not have their own jail. All our inmates are housed at the Rap­pa­han­nock-Shenan­doah-War­ren (RSW) Region­al Jail. RSW is its own enti­ty and there­fore the War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office has no author­i­ty over the facil­i­ty. To file a com­plaint on RSW or its staff, please con­tact one of the num­bers below:

Main Num­ber
(540) 622‑6097 or
(540) 622‑8678

Inmate Accounts
(540) 622‑5015

Admin­is­tra­tion Fax
(540) 622‑2846

(540) 622‑8620 or 
(540) 622‑8683

Book­ing Fax 
(540) 636‑3342

Records Depart­ment
(540) 622‑5024

Records Fax
(540) 631‑0704

Med­ical Depart­ment
(540) 622‑5038

Med­ical Fax
(540) 636‑3358

Com­mu­ni­ty Cus­tody
(540) 622‑5032

Com­mu­ni­ty Cus­tody Fax
(540) 631‑0933


The War­ren Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office does not have their own jail. All our inmates are housed at the Rap­pa­han­nock-Shenan­doah-War­ren (RSW) Region­al Jail. For more infor­ma­tion on the Region­al Jail please see the Rap­pa­han­nock-Shenan­doah-War­ren Region­al Jail Sec­tion below.

To see the sta­tus of or to look up inmates of RSW Region­al Jail you may go to RSW Region­al Jail — RSW Inmate Loca­tor.


What is a Magistrate?

Many of the day-to-day func­tions of the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem involve a mag­is­trate. A mag­is­trate is a judi­cial offi­cer appoint­ed by the Com­mon­wealth of Vir­ginia to pro­vide an extra check and bal­ance in our jus­tice sys­tem before a case goes to court.

Mag­is­trates are involved in issu­ing many dif­fer­ent legal process­es, includ­ing but not lim­it­ed to arrest war­rants, search war­rants, Pro­tec­tive Orders (also com­mon­ly known as “restrain­ing orders”), Emer­gency Cus­tody Orders and Tem­po­rary Deten­tion Orders (both of which are used in men­tal health and med­ical situations).

War­ren Coun­ty is locat­ed in the 4th Region of Virginia’s 26th Mag­is­te­r­i­al Dis­trict along with Rock­ing­ham, Page, Shenan­doah, Clarke, and Fred­er­ick Coun­ties, and the Cities of Har­rison­burg and Winchester.

How is a Mag­is­trate Use­ful to a Citizen?

While a magistrate’s dai­ly inter­ac­tions con­sist of most­ly law enforce­ment and region­al jail offi­cers, pri­vate cit­i­zens can also use the mag­is­trate for a vari­ety of rea­sons, main­ly the following:

  • To issue a war­rant for the arrest of anoth­er person 
    • This is com­mon in sit­u­a­tions where a law enforce­ment offi­cer is not present at the time of the offense. For exam­ple, if your neigh­bor has tres­passed on your prop­er­ty but left before law enforce­ment can arrive on scene, you can still have them charged crim­i­nal­ly by going before the mag­is­trate and swear­ing under oath to the facts at hand.
  • To issue an Emer­gency Pro­tec­tive Order 
    • If some­one has made you fear­ful of death or great bod­i­ly harm, one of the ways you can pro­tect your­self from that per­son is by obtain­ing a pro­tec­tive order against them. A mag­is­trate can issue an Emer­gency Pro­tec­tive Order (EPO), which is valid for 72 hours, in emer­gency sit­u­a­tions or out­side the nor­mal busi­ness hours of the courthouse.
  • To issue an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order 
    • An Emer­gency Cus­tody Order (ECO) is an order issued by a mag­is­trate that allows law enforce­ment to take cus­tody of an indi­vid­ual who is a dan­ger to them­selves or some­one else due to a men­tal ill­ness. If, for exam­ple, you have a fam­i­ly mem­ber who is expe­ri­enc­ing sui­ci­dal thoughts but refus­es to get help, an ECO can be issued by a mag­is­trate allow­ing the Sheriff’s Office to take them to the hos­pi­tal and receive treatment.


Law enforce­ment have a very spe­cif­ic involve­ment when it comes to indi­vid­u­als suf­fer­ing from the effects of a men­tal ill­ness. Aside from attempt­ing to de-esca­late or nego­ti­ate with a per­son in cri­sis, law enforce­ment offi­cers are called upon to exe­cute Emer­gency Cus­tody Orders and Tem­po­rary Deten­tion Orders.

Emer­gency Cus­tody Orders

Pur­suant to Vir­ginia Code §37.2–808, an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order can be issued when an individual:

(i) has a men­tal ill­ness and that there exists a sub­stan­tial like­li­hood that, as a result of men­tal ill­ness, the per­son will, in the near future,

(a) cause seri­ous phys­i­cal harm to him­self or oth­ers as evi­denced by recent behav­ior caus­ing, attempt­ing, or threat­en­ing harm and oth­er rel­e­vant infor­ma­tion, if any, or

(b) suf­fer seri­ous harm due to his lack of capac­i­ty to pro­tect him­self from harm or to pro­vide for his basic human needs,

(ii) is in need of hos­pi­tal­iza­tion or treat­ment, and

(iii) is unwill­ing to vol­un­teer or inca­pable of vol­un­teer­ing for hos­pi­tal­iza­tion or treatment.

An Emer­gency Cus­tody Order directs law enforce­ment offi­cers to take that per­son into cus­tody and trans­port them to a loca­tion where they can be eval­u­at­ed by men­tal health pro­fes­sion­als to assess the need for hos­pi­tal­iza­tion or treat­ment. The dura­tion of an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order is eight (8) hours.

What Hap­pens After the 8 Hour Mark?

Once eight hours have elapsed, the men­tal health pro­fes­sion­als con­duct­ing the assess­ment will have reached a con­clu­sion about whether or not addi­tion­al hos­pi­tal­iza­tion and/or treat­ment are need­ed. The two most like­ly out­comes are: the patient is released from the hos­pi­tal with a Safe­ty Plan and referred to addi­tion­al resources that can help them, or more treat­ment is nec­es­sary. If more treat­ment is nec­es­sary and the patient refus­es to vol­un­tar­i­ly under­take the treat­ment, a Tem­po­rary Deten­tion Order (TDO) can be issued. A Tem­po­rary Deten­tion Order is an exten­sion of an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order, and it can last up to 72 hours before there is a court hear­ing to deter­mine if addi­tion­al care is nec­es­sary. Through­out this time, the patient remains in the cus­tody and care of a men­tal health facil­i­ty specif­i­cal­ly des­ig­nat­ed for these situations.

How Does All This Happen?

The Code of Vir­ginia allows for a law enforce­ment offi­cer to take a per­son into cus­tody on an offi­cer-ini­ti­at­ed (also referred to as “paper­less”) Emer­gency Cus­tody Order. This exists for sit­u­a­tions where a clear and present dan­ger exists that requires a per­son to be tak­en into cus­tody and receive treat­ment imme­di­ate­ly – in the event of an attempt­ed sui­cide, for example.

If you have a friend, acquain­tance, or fam­i­ly mem­ber who is exhibit­ing the symp­toms described above (a dan­ger to them­selves, a dan­ger to oth­ers, or inca­pable of car­ing for them­selves due to men­tal ill­ness and unwilling/unable to vol­un­tar­i­ly receive treat­ment), you can obtain an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order for them from the mag­is­trate – see the sec­tion on Access­ing the Mag­is­trate on our web­site for more information.

If you have any ques­tions at all about whether an Emer­gency Cus­tody Order would be appro­pri­ate in a spe­cif­ic sit­u­a­tion, please don’t hes­i­tate to call our Office at (540) 645‑4128 to speak to a Deputy on duty.


Pro­tec­tive Orders aim to keep aggres­sors away from their vic­tims or would be vic­tims. There are three lev­els of Pro­tec­tive Orders:

Emer­gency Pro­tec­tive Orders (EPO) are only good for 72 hours from the time of issuance. EPO’s are issued by the Magistrate.

Pre­lim­i­nary Pro­tec­tive Order (PPO) is good until the issuance of an Order of Pro­tec­tion or denial or Denial of Pro­tec­tive Order. PPO’s can be obtained through Juve­nile and Domes­tic Rela­tions or Gen­er­al Dis­trict Court depend­ing on the circumstances.

Order of Pro­tec­tion (OOP) is gen­er­al­ly good for 2 years unless oth­er­wise indi­cat­ed by the issu­ing judge. An Order of Pro­tec­tion-Child Order is good until the 18th birth­day of the pro­tect­ed juvenile.

A Pro­tec­tive Order can be denied (Denial Pro­tec­tive Order) for sev­er­al rea­sons or dis­missed (Dis­missal Pro­tec­tive Orders) by order of the court with no exceptions.

To obtain an Emer­gency Pro­tec­tive Order you will need to go before the Mag­is­trate or to obtain a Pre­lim­i­nary Pro­tec­tive Order you will need to go to the courthouse.

Pro­tec­tive Order Brochure


Here is a link to the Code of Vir­ginia on the def­i­n­i­tion of a threat against a per­son and the require­ments to break that law. Link 


How to tres­pass some­one from your property?

Option 1 – The prop­er­ty that you are request­ing some­one not enter upon can be prop­er­ly post­ed. This means post­ing a sign, giv­ing notice to any per­son not to tres­pass upon your prop­er­ty. This method is a blan­ket tres­pass and not spe­cif­ic to a spe­cif­ic per­son. This sign must be post­ed in a con­spic­u­ous place so that the sign can be eas­i­ly seen by all. If you have a large area of prop­er­ty, mul­ti­ple signs may be needed.

Option 2 – You may send some­one a notice of no tres­pass­ing through the mail. This notice must include at a min­i­mum; the date issued, who is being tres­passed, the address of the prop­er­ty you are request­ing they not tres­pass upon, that you are request­ing them not to enter upon or tres­pass on this prop­er­ty, and who the no tres­pass notice is from. To ensure the intend­ed recip­i­ent receives this notice and to prove ser­vice, this no tres­pass notice should be mailed cer­ti­fied through the Post Office, sig­na­ture upon deliv­ery. You should also keep a dupli­cate copy of the notice sent for your records and keep the cer­ti­fied sig­na­ture receipt with to no tres­pass notice.

Sam­ple – No Tres­pass­ing Notice


If cus­tody has not been estab­lished: You will need to sched­ule an intake appoint­ment with the Court Ser­vice Unit at 540–636-4189 between the hours of 8:00 A.M – 4:30 P.M. The Court Ser­vice Unit is locat­ed at 1 E. Main St, Front Roy­al, VA 22630.

Once a court order of cus­tody and vis­i­ta­tion is entered, the cus­tody and vis­i­ta­tion arrange­ment CANNOT be changed with­out fur­ther order from the court. Any par­ty may seek enforce­ment of the court order if anoth­er par­ty fails to fol­low the court order.

Vio­la­tion of a Child Cus­tody Order: A Child Cus­tody and Vis­i­ta­tion Order is a Civ­il mat­ter unless a crime has occurred in accor­dance with the Code of Vir­ginia 18.2–49.1.