My question involves criminal law for the state of: New Jersey
I was found guilty of disorderly persons contempt for violating the no-contact clause of a restraining order my Ex has against me. There were no witnesses but the trial court found that I called her an asshole. they said that in and of itself was not illegal in terms of harassment and they did not conclude/decide that the name calling was a violation of the no-contact clause (I would think it is). However, the Trial Court found that by allowing my Ex to observe a photo , that I was showing to my son, i violated the no contact clause as it was coupled with the name calling. The Court said I had the photo in "plain view" of my ex with intent to harass. The court concluded that I must have had intent to harass because I had a child support hearing coming up. It was like perry mason with the judge trying to get me to say I was upset with the then upcoming child support hearing (and I quickly realized what the judge was trying to do).
My Ex initially said I held the photo in her face and said nothing but then later called her an asshole. On cross my Ex said she observed the photo from within a bunch of others in the folder. Something seems wrong with this as being wrong as the testimony revealed that my Ex was an active "looker" as compared to me being an active "shower". My ex was looking over my shoulder to see what I was showing my son. It's comparable to my Ex saying she saw me wearing a flannel shirt (and in court, she never even said that she was offended by the photo!) and then later I'm found to have contacted her by virtue of wearing a flannel shirt.
Of course this complaint started with an allegation to the police that I pushed her door in and yelled obscenitiess at her and held out a photo to intimidate her. But this stuff was either not mentioned or quickly dissolved in trial.
It seems like a first amendment rights issue but I'm trying to wrap my arms aroung the proper legal argument. I've spent days looking for comparable case law but really havent found anything other than Wilmouth (which we tried at trial) and a case where a guy put a stickynote on his ex's car asking to call him and the last case I have is when an ex complained that the husband was at their kid's soccer game within her view (the appellate court found their FRO procluding him from being anywhere she is at, to be unenforcable (too vague)).
Any ideas? this is my whole case.. and to be clear, I was picking up my kid on easter, I didn't show my ex anything and I didn't call her names. She conjured the incident to get sympathy in the upcoming childsupport court and I know this because the first thing out of her mouth to the child support judge was "he violated the FRO!".