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Stalking Laws

What is stalking?

Stalking is a tern that is generally used to define unwanted and obsessive attention towards one person by another person or group of people. The behavior of stalking are closely related to harassment and intimidation and may include following the victim in person or monitoring the person’s behavior and actions. In some legal jurisdictions or psychology or psychiatry, stalking has different meanings and can be referred to as a term for a criminal offense. In 2002 a report made by the National Center for Victims of Crime states; "Virtually any unwanted contact between two people that directly or indirectly communicates a threat or places the victim in fear can be considered stalking."

In the state of North Carolina, what is defined as stalking and what can a person do if he/she is the victim of stalking?

In the state of North Carolina, stalking is described as a person, on two or more occasions, following or harassing another person, by will, without legal reason and with the intent to place the victim in fear for his/her safety or the safety of his/her family, or intending to place the victim in emotional distress due to such fears. The statute for stalking is found at the following link;
http://law.justia.com/codes/north-carolina/2009/Chapter_14/GS_14-277_3A.html.

If a person is the victim of stalking then he/she should report the issue to their local law enforcement and file a complaint. The state may decide to pursue criminal charges against the stalker. In North Carolina, stalking can be a basis to get a restraining order.

In the state of Connecticut, what is considered stalking and what is considered abuse?

In the state of Connecticut, they have three degrees of stalking that they look at based on intent and prior offenses. Recklessly causing a person to fear for his/her physical safety by following the victim repeatedly or lying in wait for the victim is considered to be third-degree stalking. When a person adds the element of intent, the charge gets moved to second-degree stalking. First-degree stalking is when a person has prior stalking charges, violates a court order or stalks a person that is 16 years of age or younger. Abuse however, is when a person is harmed during a fight between household members.

How would a person file stalking charges when the stalking incident happened online?

It is a violation of most state laws for a person to stalk or harass another person via the internet. The victim of the stalking would have grounds to file for a restraining order and a civil suit to gain damages. The victim may want to consider hiring a computer expert to find out where the stalking derived from or to lay a trap for the stalker. The evidence that is gathered, if there is any, can be used in both a criminal case and a civil case.

What should a wife do if she suspects her husband of stalking teens in an online chat room?

The wife would need to contact her local F.B.I office and report her suspicions to them as well as provide the names of the chat rooms in which she believes her husband is a part of. The F.B.I will then log onto the chat room and see if indeed the husband is stalking teenagers or talking to them in a sexual manor.

What is the statute of limitations for stalking in the states of New York and Wisconsin?

In the state of New York, stalking through the mail is considered to be stalking in the fourth degree, a Class B misdemeanor and has a 2 year statute of limitations. In the state of Wisconsin, stalking through the mail is a felony and carries a statute of limitation of 6 years.

When a person faces a situation where they are the victim of a stalker, the laws and what to do may confuse them or they may be too scared to act within the law. The victim can seek the advice of an Expert to gain insight into what he/or she should do when it comes to a stalker.
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