Stalking and Harassment
Stalking is :
- a crime!
- not a joke!
- not romantic!
- not ok!
What is it?
- Stalking causes the victim to fear distress, violence or to suffer serious alarm. To be guilty of the offence of stalking the offender must, on at least two occasions, indulge in conduct that causes the victim harassment, alarm or distress. The 2012 Act recognises stalking as harassment that may include persistent and repeated contact or attempts to contact a victim. It provides a list of examples;
- contacting, or attempting to contact, a person by any means
- publishing any statement or other material relating or purporting to relate to a person, or purporting to originate from a person
- monitoring the use by a person of the internet, email or any other form of electronic communication
- loitering in any place (whether public or private)
- interfering with a person property
- watching or spying on a person
- unwanted gifts
- rearranging items
- always 'bumping into them'
- calling Social Services with fictitious claims
The 2012 Act clarifies references to harassment causing fear in the 1997 Act. It uses the phrase ‘substantial adverse effect on the usual day-to-day activities’. Examples might include victims fitting more security devices, changing routes to work or arranging for others to pick up children from school to avoid the attentions of a stalker. As a result the victim has less freedom.
What can you do:
- Take action, call the police and tell them what is happening; you will be taken seriously
- Do not confront your stalker or respond
- Keep a record of times and places, messages, call logs, emails
- Download the Hollie Guard app https://holliegazzard.org/hollieguard/ This will alert your chosen contacts of your whereabouts by GPS and record sound and video
- Tell friends, family and your workplace what is happening
- Improve your safety - leave at different times, take different routes
- Call Coventry Haven Women's Aid for help and support - T: 02476444077
- The National Stalking helpline: www.stalkinghelpline.org
- The Suzy Lamplugh Trust: www.suzylamplugh.org
- Hollie Gazzard Trust line: www.https://holliegazzard.org/
- 94% of 358 female murders included stalking behaviour
- 1 in 2 'ex or known' stalking will act on their threats (ex partner, friend, someone you've met once, dated once etc)
- 1 in 10 'stranger' stalking will act on their threats
- 80% of victims are female
- 71% of perpetrators are male