You are being stalked when a person repeatedly watches, follows or harasses you, making you feel afraid or unsafe. A stalker can be someone you know, a past boyfriend or girlfriend or a stranger. While the actual legal definition varies from one state to another, here is how it is defined by Colorado statutes:
Misdemeanor & Felony Stalking
Even though stalking is part of the harassment statute, it is a separate and distinct crime and is more serious. While all forms of harassment are misdemeanors, a first conviction for stalking is a Class 5 felony, and a subsequent conviction is a Class 4 felony.
Most people have a general sense of what it means to stalk another person, but the Colorado prohibition against stalking is a more specifically defined and technically descriptive of the acts that are specifically prohibited.
Per the statute, there are three forms of stalking. The first involves the combination of credible threat and acts such as following:
- Show up at your home or place of work unannounced or uninvited.
- Send you unwanted text messages, letters, emails and voicemails.
- Leave unwanted items, gifts or flowers.
- Constantly call you and hang up.
- Use social networking sites and technology to track you.
- Spread rumors about you via the internet or word of mouth.
- Make unwanted phone calls to you.
- Call your employer or professor.
- Wait at places you hang out.
- Damage your home, car or other property.
The second involves a credible threat combined with any form of repeated communications, and the third does not require a credible threat, but rather repeated acts such as following or communications resulting in serious emotional distress.
In all instances, the acts may be directed toward the alleged victim or third parties who have specific associations with the victim. An act is "repeated" if it occurs more than once.
Click below to read the official Colorado statutory definition for this offense: