When you think about stalking, images of a TV show or horror movie might come to mind. Many of these are full of stereotypes about a man stalking a woman. While stalking doesn’t always necessarily involve a male stalking a female, this is the majority of cases that end up in the criminal justice system.
According to research shared by Science Daily, nearly 12% of women will experience some kind of stalking over the course of their lives, compared with only 4% of men. In more than 90% of these stalking situations the victim knows the person stalking him or her. Physical stalking, however, is not the only kind of incident that warrants a conversation with a Miami criminal lawyer.
Cyber stalking is becoming increasingly prevalent on social media and through other online avenues. If you discover that someone is stalking you over Facebook or another type of social media, then it is critical to understand that you may have legal options to pursue. Regardless of the form that stalking takes, it is still a crime.
How Is Cyber Stalking Classified?
Stalking itself is technically considered a type of domestic violence from a legal perspective. Although there are not any physical elements associated directly with cyber stalking when referring to a situation that occurs only online, many of the same emotions and feelings could be experienced by a stalking victim.
Online stalking refers to any situation where another individual is communicating in an upsetting or threatening manner. Any kind of violent or physical threat can make someone feel unfortunate. Learn more about some of Florida’s cyber stalking laws.
One of the reasons why cyber stalking has become so popular in recent years is that it is classified as an easy kind of abuse. Stalking and online bullying can come with a false sense of security and confidentiality for the stalker. Learn more about the cyber stalking psychology here.
Signs of Cyber Stalking
In the event that someone is posting information about you on social media or elsewhere on the internet that is offensive, abusive or negative then your first line of attack should be to request that person to stop. While this might seem obvious, sometimes it could be misconstrued as playful.
Be clear about the behavior that you do not like and get it in writing. Your next line of attack in the event that your first option does not work is to attempt to understand that person’s motive for bothering you. Intent does matter in this situation. Facebook stalking signs could mean an individual who will not leave you alone despite multiple requests.
It is important to keep track of any documentation that supports your allegations of stalking. You may wish to take screenshots of these messages in case they are later deleted and block that person from bothering you. This could aggravate the person further if they discover that you have blocked them. In the event that someone else has asked you to discontinue communicating with them on Facebook or another avenue, it is recommended that you comply.
When Do I Need Further Help?
There are some situations where a person stalking you online or on Facebook could be unnerving. The individual may try to create fake profiles or to hack into one of your profiles or your friend’s profile to communicate with you.
Any documentation of this can be extremely important for speaking with the police. In a serious stalking situation, you may be eligible to pursue criminal charges or a restraining order, especially if the stalking behavior is happening both on and off the web.
If you obtain a restraining order against another individual who already has domestic violence charges or issues associated with you, then that person could be classified as violating an existing protection order.
What to Do If You Have Been Accused of Cyber Stalking?
Criminal charges involving cyber stalking, domestic violence or other kinds of stalking and harassing behavior can be complicated. This is why it is essential to reach out to a Miami criminal defense attorney as soon as you believe that someone may be accusing you or pursuing criminal charges. A Miami criminal defense attorney can help you significantly.
Marcia Giordano Hansen is an attorney with 15 years of experience defending clients in criminal court. Marcia Giordano Hansen is able to handle criminal matters in both State and Federal Court. She has experience representing clients accused of minor offenses such as disorderly conduct and trespass, to white collar crimes such as mortgage fraud and tax fraud.