There is an increasing focus on harassment and stalking. Reports estimate that 14 in every 1,000 persons claims to experience stalking. As a result of this statistic, the state of Alabama tends to take harassment charges seriously. Based on the circumstances surrounding a case, an individual can end up facing either misdemeanor or felony charges. When faced with a harassment charge, it is often a wise idea to consult about the matter with an experienced criminal defense attorney. Another wise idea when faced with a harassment charge is for an individual to begin learning some basic information about the various laws in the state of Alabama addressing harassment charges.
What Constitutes Harassment In The State of Alabama?
Most often, harassment charges arise in the domestic violence context. Harassment can include a variety of behavior types that are intended to harass, annoy, or alarm another individual. Harassment can take the form of physical conduct which includes any type of unwanted or touching. Individuals can also be charged with harassment when the individual makes an obscene gesture towards another human being or uses offensive language that is directed at another individual. Threatening another individual is also considered to constitute harassment.
Yet another type of harassment charge that exists in the state of Alabama is harassing communications which occur when individual intends to annoy or harass another individual and uses any mode of communication including phone or postal mail to perform this harassment.
When an individual continuously harasses another then a stalking charge can be filed. For stalking to occur, an individual must have the intent to place a person in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily harm. When an individual who has already been charged with stalking continues to stalk another then an aggravated stalking charge can be presented.
What Are The Consequences of Harassment And Stalking?
In the state of Alabama, harassment and harassing communications are considered Class C misdemeanors, which can result in a ninety day prison sentence and fine of up to five hundred dollars based upon how a particular case is treated by a court of law.
Stalking charges in the state of Alabama are classified as Class C felonies, which can result in a maximum of ten years in prison and a fine up to $!5,000. Aggravated stalking is even more serious and considered a Class B felony that can result in twenty years in prison and a $30,000 fine. Given the serious nature of the consequences resulting from these charges, it is essential that parties consult with experienced legal counsel concerning such matters.
What Defenses Are Available To A Harassment Charge?
A skilled attorney will be able to review potential defenses to a harassment charge and know the strongest way to respond to such a case. One potential strategy is to have a harassment charge downgraded so that an individual does not face a criminal charge but only a fine. Other times, the opposing counsel's argument might be particularly difficult to prove and as result legal counsel might know how to argue that harassment did not occur. Whatever the details may be concerning a harassment charge, a strong and capable criminal defense attorney can be particularly advantageous in defending against such a case.
When faced with a harassment charge, it is essential to retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney who can thoroughly investigate the facts of a case and construct strong defense strategies in response to harassment charges. For strong and talented legal representation contact the Eversole Law Offices today for a free consultation.