Charles City Stalking Lawyer

In an attempt to address incidents of ongoing harassment, state law has adopted aggressive stalking laws. These laws are designed to prevent someone from initiating certain types of unwanted contact with another person. However, the behavior the statute targets is broad and could lead to law enforcement mistakenly charging someone.

If the police have arrested you on stalking charges, you are protected by legal rights regardless of what occurred. The police may try to rush judgment and make an arrest when it is unwarranted. When this happens, an experienced domestic violence attorney could help you fight the charges. A Charles City stalking lawyer could work to build a case in your defense.

Behavior Leading to a Stalking Charge

Generally, law enforcement could arrest someone for following or harassing someone based on any conduct that leads a person to reasonably fear imminent injury, death, or assault. While there is not a list of behaviors that meet this misconduct, some common examples of behavior that may result in a stalking charge include:

  • Repeated phone calls, emails, instant messages, or other forms for communication
  • Following a person
  • Showing up at someone’s workplace or home

Law enforcement is often quick to act when a person reports unwanted attention or communication from someone else. A Charles City stalking attorney could help an individual unjustly accused of following or harassing someone.

Consequences of a Conviction

According to Virginia Code § 18.2-60.3, stalking is a Class 1 misdemeanor in most cases. The penalty for a misdemeanor carries up to one year in jail, although in some cases the sentence is far less than this time period. A conviction also could result in a maximum fine of $2,500.

Following a conviction, the court may order the defendant to avoid any contact with the alleged victim or their immediate family. A Charles City attorney could work to mitigate the potential consequences that a defendant may be facing in a stalking case.

Stalking with a Protective Order

The ramifications of an arrest can increase dramatically for someone who violates a protective order. Whether that order is from a prior stalking charge or related to a domestic incident, any contact that constitutes unwanted attention or communication could result in a violation of the protective order. In this instance, the potential penalties can be much higher than those affixed to a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Stalking with a Prior Offense

Prior convictions for stalking also can have a sizeable impact on the penalties an accused individual may be facing. Anyone accused of stalking that has a prior conviction within the previous five years may endure a Class 6 felony. Under state law, a Class 6 felony could result in a maximum jail sentence of five years in prison as well as a fine of up to $2,500.

Contact a Charles City Stalking Attorney for Legal Representation

If you are facing charges of following or harassing someone, an experienced Charles City stalking lawyer could become your legal advocate. Without the help of skilled legal counsel, your rights may be trampled in the court system. To ensure that your rights are protected, contact an attorney to discuss your legal options.

Charles City Domestic Violence Lawyer