May 30, 2015

Stalking Is A Crime

Have you ever had a stalker or know someone who has been the victim of a stalker?

Stalking is an ambiguous crime. The victim suffers the psychological effects of their stalker's actions; the effects include anxiety, stress, emotional distress, but the actions of the stalker are so obscure that it is difficult to call the police to make a report.

When describing the actions of the stalker to my therapist, who has known me for over 30 years, she nods her head in complete agreement.

"Yes, in the truest definition of stalking, you are being stalked!" she says.

What is the definition of Stalking you might ask!

Wikipedia states: "Stalking is unwanted or obsessive attention by an individual or group toward another person. Stalking behaviors are related to harassment and intimidation and may include following the victim in person or monitoring them."

The psychological effects can be overwhelming, in my case, the symptoms of my PTSD are exacerbated.  In the article, Cyberstalking, Lamber Royakkers writes, "Stalking is a form of mental assault, in which the perpetrator repeatedly, un-wantedly, and disruptively breaks into the life-world of the victim, with whom they have no relationship (or no longer have). Moreover, the separated acts that make up the intrusion cannot by themselves cause the mental abuse, but do taken together (cumulative effect)."

 Wikipedia also notes that women typically stalk other women while men will usually stalk women.

Five different types of stalkers have been identified in an article in the monthly magazine Psychology. It is titled,  A Study of Stalkers and defines the five distinct types as:

1. Rejected Stalkers. These individuals pursue their victims in order to reverse, correct, or avenge a rejection.
2.  Resentful Stalkers. The stalking is to pursue a vendetta because of a sense of grievance against the victims – motivated mainly by the desire to frighten or distress the victim.
3, 4 and 5 are described as Intimacy, Incompetent or Predatory Stalkers, which, for this post, we will ignore.

Stalking was deemed illegal in the United States in 1990 but remains a controversial crime because a conviction does not require proof of physical harm to the victim.  How does one build a case?

Documentation is vital. Are you being watched? Does the stalker read your blog and make calls to family or friends to get the details, to gather information about you? Do you feel that you are being watched or does stalker intrude on your personal life?

Manipulation? Stalkers are looking for interaction with their victims, even though it is uninvited interaction. Is your stalker making up stories about you to others thinking that you will have to interact with them to "set the story straight?"

Internet Stalking, other wise called Cyber-stalking is also a crime. Has your stalker intimidated you into changing your online habits?

Defamation of character is another tactic for forced interaction.Stalkers try to isolate their victims from family and friends by releasing character-damaging information, whether it is true or not. Most people will pull away from such exchanges. Don't let yourself be isolated. Step up, tell the truth or explain your side of the situation. Again: Document the event.

Stalking is subtle but pervasive. Cumulative unwanted contact can harm you. Document all unwanted contact.

Call the police and file a complaint and request a restraining order. Your documentation will help.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment Please but Play Nice!