Although harassment is illegal in most parts of the world, some of the actions that contribute to harassment may be legal, such as gathering information, making phone calls, sending text messages, sending gifts, sending emails, or instant messaging. They become illegal if they violate the legal definition of harassment (for example, an act such as sending a text is generally not illegal, but illegal if it is frequently repeated to a non-consenting recipient). In fact, UK law states that the incident should only happen twice if the harasser is to be aware that their behaviour is unacceptable (e.g. two calls with a stranger, two gifts, follow the victim and then call them, etc.). [15] In addition, personality traits often discussed as precursors to criminal harassment can also lead to behaviour that is not generally defined as harassment. Some research suggests that there is a spectrum of what might be called “obsessive consequence behavior.” People who complain obsessively and for years about a suspected wrongdoer or wrongdoer, when no one else can perceive the injury – and people who can`t or won`t “let go” of a person, place, or idea – form a larger group of people who can be problematic in a similar way to harassment. Some of these people are extruded from their organizations – they may be hospitalized or released or released if their behavior is defined in relation to illegal harassment, but many others are doing good or even great work in their organizations and seem to have only one persistent obsession center. [30] People who are labeled as stalkers may be accused of having a misconception that another person loves them (erotomania) or that they need to be saved. [15] Criminal harassment can consist of an accumulation of a series of actions that may be legal in themselves, such as making phone calls, sending gifts or sending emails.

[17] Or according to Article 245 of the Criminal Code of the People`s Republic of China: Anyone who illegally searches the body or residence of another person or illegally enters another person`s residence shall be punished with imprisonment for up to three years or imprisonment. Judges who abuse their powers and commit the crimes referred to in the preceding paragraph shall be severely punished. [53] Prior to the arrest of a stalker, a victim may obtain a civil defense or an injunction ordering the defendant not to contact or approach the victim. If the defendant violates the protection order, a court may despise him, impose fines, or imprison him, depending on state law. In some states, a penalty for harassment is increased if the harasser violates a protection order. In 2018, the PAWS Act went into effect in the United States, expanding the definition of criminal harassment to include “conduct that causes a person to fear death or serious bodily harm to his or her pet.” [87] This fact sheet on criminal harassment provides a quick guide to harassment, including up-to-date statistical information and a legal overview. Many states have both misdemeanor and criminal record classifications for harassment. Offences are generally punishable by up to one year in prison. Penalties for offences range from three to five years, with the possibility of increasing the penalty if one or more elements are present. For example, if the defendant brandishes a firearm, violates a protection order, commits a previous criminal harassment offence, or directed his or her behaviour against a child, the penalty may be increased. In some states, repeated offenses can carry a prison sentence of up to ten years. Within three years,[80] all states in the United States followed suit to create the crime of stalking under different names such as criminal harassment or criminal threat.

The Drivers` Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) was passed in 1994 in response to numerous cases where a driver`s information was misused for criminal purposes, including the Saldana and Schaeffer-Stalking cases. [82] [83] The DPPA prohibits states from disclosing a driver`s personal data without permission from the State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). If your harassment situation has a sexual assault component, the National Rape, Abuse and Incest Network (RAINN) has a 24/7 hotline that connects you to your local advocacy center for help and provides crisis support by phone at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or through their live chat service. If you are a person accused of criminal harassment and it is a mistake, it is important to have a good legal advisor who will explain to the court exactly how this error could have occurred, and perhaps provide an amicable solution. A crime in your record is an ongoing event that can radically change the future. And months or years in prison or prison destroy lives and livelihoods. Stieger, Burger and Schild conducted a survey in Austria that showed a lifetime prevalence of 11% (women: 17%, men: 3%). [42] Other results: 86% of stalking victims were women, 81% of stalkers were men. Women were mostly stalked by men (88%), while men were followed almost equally by men and women (60% of male stalkers). 19% of stalking victims reported that they were still being stalked at the time of their study (point prevalence rate: 2%). 70% of victims were aware of the harasser`s existence, in 40% of cases the harasser was a former intimate partner, in 23% a friend or acquaintance, and in 13% of cases a co-worker. As a result, 72% of victims reported changing their lifestyle.

52% of former and persistent victims of stalking reported having a current impairment of psychological (pathological) well-being. There was no significant difference between the incidence of criminal harassment in rural and urban areas. According to one study, women often target other women, while men mainly stalk women. [21] [22] A January 2009 report from the U.S. Department of Justice stated that “men were just as likely to report being prosecuted by a man as by a female offender. 43% of male victims of stalking reported that the perpetrator was female, while 41% of male victims reported that the perpetrator was another male. Female victims of stalking were much more likely to be followed by a man (67%) than a woman (24%). This report contains extensive data on stalking and stalking[23] obtained from the U.S.

Department of Justice as part of the U.S. Census Bureau`s 2006 Supplementary Survey of Victimization (SVS). [24] Today, when email is ubiquitous, much of the harassment is done electronically. This type of behavior is easy to prove and as we can see in our article on hard drive discovery, it is almost impossible for the author to hide. [Note 3] Ministry of Justice. “Cyberstalking: A New Challenge for Law Enforcement and Industry: A Report from the Attorney General to the Vice President.” Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, 1999, NCJ 179575. While anti-harassment laws provide police and prosecutors with the tools to arrest and prosecute stalkers for serious crimes, victims of stalking play an important role in enforcing these laws. Law enforcement officials, domestic violence counselors, and psychiatrists give victims the following advice on how to arrest a stalker: Since 2011, harassment has been an offence under Article 120a of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). [85] The Act came into force on October 1, 2007. “Stalking.” Merriam-Webster.com Legal Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, www.merriam-webster.com/legal/stalking.

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