Safe Place

The Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) is the only state-certified center for domestic violence and sexual assault services for Sarasota and DeSoto Counties. All of SPARCC's services are free and confidential, such as assistance with filing for injunctions, a shelter operating 24 hours per day/365 days per year, court advocacy, children's services, and more. SPARCC also provides safety planning, crisis counseling and emergency shelter for victims, and their families.

The SPARCC VICTIM HOTLINE ( 941) 365-1976 OR toll free (877) 365-1976 (DeSoto) is answered 24 hours per day to provide immediate response to the needs of callers. Go to SPARCC on the web at www.SPARCC.net for more information about programs and services. SPARCC has multiple locations in Sarasota and DeSoto to serve victims of domestic violence or sexual assault:

Sarasota Outreach and Administration Center
2139 Main Street
Sarasota, FL 34237
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 365-0208

Venice Outreach Office (by appointment only)
1531 Tamiami Trail South, Suite 702-A
Venice FL 34285
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 492-3752

North Port Outreach Office (by appointment only)
6919 Outreach Way, B103
North Port, FL 34287|
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 429-3720

Arcadia Outreach Office
107 West Oak Street, Suite 202
Arcadia, FL 34266
Toll Free HOTLINE (877) 365-1976
Administrative Line (863) 494-4948

Restraining Order for Dating Violence

If you or members of your immediate family are a victim of dating violence, you can use this form to ask the Court for a protective order prohibiting dating violence. Dating violence means violence between individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The dating relationship must have existed within the past six months, the nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties, and the frequency and type of interaction must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship. Dating violence does not include violence in a casual acquaintanceship or violence between individuals who only have engaged in ordinary fraternization in a business or social context. Dating violence includes: assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death.

Because you are making a request to the Court, you are called the petitioner. The person whom you are asking the Court to protect you from is called the respondent. If you are under the age of eighteen and have never been married or had the disabilities of nonage removed by a Court, one of your parents or your legal guardian must sign this petition on your behalf.

The parent or legal guardian of any minor child who is living at home may seek an injunction for protection against dating violence on behalf of the minor child. With respect to a minor child who is living at home, the parent or legal guardian must have been an eye-witness to, or have direct physical evidence or affidavits from eye-witnesses of, the specific facts and circumstances that form the basis of the petition.

There is no filing fee.

Documents to be filed when applying for a restraining order for dating violence are as follows:

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