NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED FEDERAL LAWYERS
Last Updated on: 6th August 2023, 09:55 pm
A crime that is common in all states and one that you might not even realize that you’re committing is stalking. The crime involves a pattern of events instead of one or two episodes. The activity is often done in a willful manner and often has a malicious background behind the crime. Bronx stalking laws are among the oldest in the state. Most of the time, stalking occurs between people who have ended a relationship or between people who are angry at another person for some reason and want to find out what the other person is doing at all times. Stalking involves harassment that becomes repetitive in nature and that can include a threat of some kind of harm that could occur to the victim. Many victims involved in stalking situations will seek restraining orders, and if the order is violated, then you could be charged with other crimes as well.
Stalking is usually charged in the fourth degree unless there have been incidents in the past where you’ve been charged with stalking as well. Any harmful acts that occur while you’re stalking the other person will often result in a stronger crime and harsher sentence as well. As each degree of the crime increases, your punishment will increase as well. Fourth-degree stalking is usually defined as having no clear purpose along with intentional behavior. You will cause some kind of fear for your victim or even the family members of the victim. You could also cause enough fear so that the victim’s business or employer believes that something will occur as a result of your stalking behavior. Third-degree stalking is similar to fourth-degree but often involves more victims. The threat of serious injury to the victim is also a component of third-degree stalking. A weapon would need to be present if you were to be charged with second-degree stalking. If the weapon is used against the victim, then you could face other charges, such as assault. If you have two convictions of stalking within five years, then you can be charged with second-degree stalking as well. Another way that you can be charged with second-degree stalking is if you are over 21 and the victim is 14 years or younger. If there is intentional harm to the victim, then you will likely be charged with first-degree stalking.
Since there are numerous components to the crime of stalking, it’s important to have an attorney who can examine the evidence and present the details surrounding the charges to the court. Your attorney can determine whether you had an intent to harm the victim or if you’ve been stalking the victim over a period of time or you were simply trying to make contact with that person for other reasons. The statements of the victim are often taken into consideration as well. If the victim doesn’t tell you to leave them alone, then you could use that as a defense in court. The only stalking charge that is usually classified as a felony is first-degree. The other charges are usually considered misdemeanors. However, that doesn’t mean that you won’t spend time in jail or have to pay a fine. If you are a repeat offender, then you could be charged with a higher degree of stalking even if the other elements aren’t present.
Sometimes, stalking charges end in arguments between the offender and the victim, which is something that you need to keep in mind if you know the other person could file charges against you just for making a simple form of contact. This is another reason why you should have an attorney who can examine the details of the stalking charges as well as the reason given for stalking.
Don’t deal with Bronx Stalking Lawyer alone. Speak to the Spodek Law Group today.
Stalking is a crime in all the states in the United States. In the Bronx and New York in general, it is noted as a repetitive behavior in which a person willfully and maliciously follows another person and keeps tabs on them in a variety of ways. It is never a one-time occurrence and is usually perpetrated against an estranged romantic partner or spouse. In New York, the law against stalking is defined as a crime in which there is repeated harassment that can pose the legitimate threat of harm against the victim. Stalking victims usually seek restraining orders or orders of protection to keep their stalkers at bay. It’s important to know about stalking laws in the Bronx and the rest of New York.
There are different degrees of stalking, and the lower the number, the more serious the offense.
Stalking in the Fourth Degree
Stalking in the fourth degree is considered a Class B misdemeanor. The crime occurs when a person intentionally engages in behavior they know causes fear to their victim and people close to them. The victim feels unsafe and the stalking can cause harm to their mental or emotional health and potentially threaten their employment.
If a person is found guilty and is subsequently convicted of stalking in the fourth degree, they can face jail time of up to 90 days.
If someone is a repeat offender who continuously stalks a victim within 10 years of a prior conviction, they can face penalties that include an upgrade of the stalking crime to the third degree. If the stalking reoccurs after a period of five years after a conviction, the individual can be charged with stalking in the second degree.
Stalking in the Third Degree
Stalking in the third degree is slightly more serious than in the fourth degree. The crime is charged as a Class A misdemeanor and if a person is convicted, they can face a full year in jail. To be charged with this crime, the individual would have committed stalking against three or more people in three or more situations; committed stalking when they have a prior conviction for another criminal offense against the same victim or a member of their family or another person known to the victim; or continuously harassed, annoyed or placed fear in a victim.
Stalking in the Second Degree
Stalking in the second degree is considered a Class E felony under New York state law and carries a penalty of four years in prison if the individual is convicted. A person can be charged with this crime if they stalked a victim and possessed, displayed or threatened them with a weapon; had a prior similar conviction against the same victim, a member of their family or someone else they know within the past five years; committed fourth-degree stalking and have a prior conviction for third-degree stalking; committed stalking against 10 people in 10 different situations but was not convicted for it; or are 21 or older and have repeated committed stalking against someone under 14 and placed them in fear of injury or death.
Stalking in the First Degree
Stalking in the first degree is the most serious stalking offense and is considered a class D felony, which can carry up to seven years in prison if a person is convicted. A person can be charged and convicted of this crime if they committed stalking in the second or third degree and intentionally or recklessly caused physical harm to the victim; or committed another criminal offense.
No matter what the degree of the crime, stalking is a very serious offense in the Bronx and throughout New York in general. In many instances, the accusation of stalking can be conflicting in the way each party views the situation. If you have been charged with stalking, it’s very important to have a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side. Get in touch with a lawyer at your earliest convenience.