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Cavanaugh v. Cavanaugh

Supreme Court of Rhode Island
92 A.3d 200 (R.I. 2014)


Brian Cavanaugh (defendant) and Rosanna Cavanaugh (plaintiff) were married with one child. The Cavanaughs divorced. Brian frequently yelled and swore at Rosanna and often spoke to her in a threatening manner. After a court dismissed Rosanna’s petition for modification of Brian’s visitation rights, Brian called Rosanna on the phone multiple times, vulgarly gloating about the outcome. Rosanna filed a complaint in family court, seeking an order protecting her from domestic abuse. Rosanna testified that Brian’s conduct placed her in fear of bodily harm. Brian admitted to the described conduct. A magistrate issued a civil restraining order, prohibiting Brian from contacting Rosanna with the exception of when Brian and Rosanna exchanged their child for Brian’s visitation. The family court affirmed the order. Brian appealed.

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