New Jersey Stalking Lawyer
If you are facing stalking charges in New Jersey, contact a criminal defense attorney today. Stalking is often prosecuted aggressively in New Jersey. In some cases, the person charged with this state crime may also face federal stalking laws, depending on the situation. In many cases, stalking is charged alongside related offenses, including domestic violence charges.
In some cases, charges that involve domestic violence automatically result in harsher penalties upon conviction than in cases where no domestic violence occurred. A conviction for stalking is punishable by up to five years in prison, depending on the severity of the offense.
In stalking, you need someone by your side who can advocate for your best interests. Your New Jersey stalking lawyer will present your side of the story, and defend you in court. Do not hesitate; contact a New Jersey criminal lawyer now.Stalking Charges and Penalties
According to New Jersey Revised Statutes § 2C:12-10, someone is guilty of stalking if they:
- Purposefully or knowingly engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for their safety or the safety of a third person or suffer other emotional distress (fourth degree)
- Commit the crime of stalking in violation of an existing court order prohibiting the behavior (third degree)
- Those charged with any subsequent stalking offenses would face a third-degree charge regardless of whether there was an existing court order in place
Conviction for stalking in the fourth degree can result in an 18-month prison sentence. Conviction for third degree stalking is more serious, and is punishable by three to five years in prison. Additionally, anyone convicted of stalking faces a criminal record listing conviction for this serious offense. To defend against such penalties, an individual should contact a stalking lawyer in New Jersey as soon as possible.Stalking Laws
Under this law, course of conduct means maintaining a “visual or physical proximity” to someone. This proximity can be virtual, such as through text or social media.
If someone engages in a course of conduct that would cause a reasonable person to experience fear or emotional distress, they could face a stalking charge. For example, if someone’s text message to another person causes the other person to fear for their safety, even if the sender was merely joking, they could be charged.
Stalking charges can also arise if the accused uses a third party to cause fear or distress. For example, having a friend send a threatening (intentionally threatening or not) message through social media may be considered stalking under this law.
Prosecutors often take text messages, social media posts, and emails between the accused and a specific person out of context to argue stalking occurred. Because the legal definition of stalking is so vague, it can be hard to prove such communications or interactions did not meet the legal definition of stalking.
This is why is it important for anyone facing this charge to contact an experienced New Jersey stalking lawyer immediately after arrest.Contact an Attorney
Have you been charged with stalking? Are you concerned that prosecutors will take your words or actions out of context in order to convict you? If so, contact a stalking attorney in New Jersey today. An experienced stalking defense lawyer will present the facts of what really happened and defend you in court.