Appeal from the 280th District Court Harris County, Texas
Trial Court Cause No. 2017-05064
consists of Justices Boyce, Jamison, and Brown.
William J. Boyce Justice
Elaine Hassan appeals the trial court's denial of her
application for a protective order. For the reasons below, we
filed an application for a protective order against appellee
Tamer Hassan. Elaine included with her application an
affidavit detailing several incidents of violence that she
alleges occurred during her relationship with Tamer.
affidavit asserts that Tamer "physically and emotionally
abused [her] throughout the years of [their] marriage."
Elaine asserts that the abuse began approximately six months
after she married Tamer in December 2006. Elaine's
affidavit enumerates several specific incidents of abuse; the
descriptions of these incidents include physical and verbal
abuse as well as threats of future violence. Elaine's
affidavit also states that Tamer physically abused her while
she was pregnant.
parties proceeded to a bench trial on February 6, 2017.
Elaine testified at trial regarding the incidents included in
her affidavit. The trial court admitted as an exhibit a
photograph of Elaine taken in April 2016; Elaine is pictured
wearing a neck brace and has three visible bruises on her
testified that Tamer had visited her twice in the three weeks
preceding trial. Elaine stated that Tamer did not threaten
her with violence during these visits.
cross-examination, Elaine acknowledged that she and Tamer
were married twice. Elaine stated that she and Tamer were
married in 2005 and divorced in November 2006. Elaine
testified that she and Tamer were "common-law
married" in December 2006 and "legally"
married in 2008.
response to questioning, Elaine acknowledged that "[a]t
any point [she's] free to go where [she] want[s] when
[she] want[s] during the day." Elaine also stated that
she never reported Tamer's abuse to the police. Elaine
testified that she and Tamer currently live about 12-13 miles
apart from each other.
responded "yes" when asked if she was "still
afraid of family violence from [Tamer] today?" When
asked why she was afraid, Elaine stated "I don't
know. I always go back."
rested her case and counsel for Tamer moved for a directed
verdict on the grounds that Elaine "has not proved . . .
that [Tamer] is, in fact, a threat of future violence, nor is
conclusive as to any specific incidents of violence."
The trial court stated that it did "find that the
evidence of family violence has been presented" but did
not "have any basis for future" violence. The trial
court granted Tamer's motion for a directed verdict.
trial court signed its "Order Denying Application for
Protective Order" on February 6, 2017. ...