Stalking: Your Legal Rights
If you are being stalked...
Keep a record of every incident – major or minor – because this supports your story. Record-keeping will also help you understand these patterns, particularly related to small, seemingly innocuous events, such as knocked-over trash cans, or objects being moved in subtle ways that set off your internal alarms. You have the right to report each incident to the police, even if no crime was committed. If the police tend to dismiss minor events as non-events, your record will be important in showing the stalker’s pattern of behavior. Police incident reports are an official record of behavior for stalking charges.
You have the right to obtain a protective order. However, it is important to keep in mind that a protective order – whether a no-trespass order, a stalking protective order or domestic violence protective order – is only a piece of paper, and a tool for the criminal justice system. It does not protect you from harm. In some cases, it has increased the stalker’s violence. On the other hand, protective orders mandate arrests and may help prosecute and incarcerate the stalker. You must assess your personal situation and decide what is best for you. Click here to learn more about protective orders.
Stalking Tracking Form
The Stalking Tracking Form is available for you to download. It can allow you to keep an accurate record of incidents, the prevention steps taken, and the identity of the stalker so that you can take preventative or legal action.