“The basic premise of our argument was that there was no abuse,” Engel said. “There were none of the required incidents of abuse, and the young woman’s father acknowledged that in court. The lack of a substantive dating relationship was really incidental to our position, but clearly that was why they took the case.”
In fact, the SJC solicited “friend of the court” briefs on the issue last year before hearing arguments in November.
Peck said he does not believe the family, who attended the hearing, was surprised by the decision, given the tone of the justice’s questions last fall.
A message left for the family was not returned.
Engel said he has not heard from Compton after emailing him a copy of the ruling. But he said that as far as he’s aware, Compton complied fully with the order and has had no contact with the girl.
Now that she is 18, Peck said, it’s entirely up to her whom she chooses to date.