A former Massachusetts state representative and police officer, Jose L. Santiago, was charged on Monday with violating a restraining order against his ex-girlfriend. Last Thursday night, Santiago allegedly hit the woman, and then told her that no one would believe her because he was so well-known. He also allegedly threatened the woman that if she broke off the relationship, she wouldn't be with anyone else. According to the Eagle Tribune, Jose has a history of restraining orders with three other women. Despite the woman's allegations and the history of domestic violence, Santiago was released on personal recognizance. He was ordered to have no further contact with the woman. The judge warned that if he violated the
protective order, he would immediately be put in jail for 60 days.
Santiago was also involved in a controversy surrounding the Mayor of Lawrence, William Lantigua, and a former public works officer, Thomas Sapienza, as detailed by the Boston Globe. The mayor recently fired Sapienza, who was on unpaid leave to help his terminally-ill wife, and replaced him with Santiago. Sapienza's wife died last Thursday after battling with cancer for almost 2 years. Other allegations of corruption in the public works sector have begun to arise, such as Lantigua supposedly hiring his friends as temporary workers and then illegally put them on the payroll. In light of the mayor's careless conduct, Lawrence residents arecalling for mayor to step down from office as the claims are being investigated.
If you have been charged with violating a protective order, then you could be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. For the first offense, you might be charged with a class A misdemeanor, but a subsequent offense could be a felony.