10 Things To Know About Stalking
1. Stalking is a Crime
Stalking is a course of conduct directed at a specific person that places a reasonable person in fear for his or her safety. It is against the law in every state. Stalking across state lines or in federal territories is illegal under federal law.
2. Many people are stalked.
1 in 12 women and 1 in 45 men will be stalked in their lifetimes. 1.4 million people are stalked every year in the United States.
3. Stalking can be very dangerous.
76 percent of women killed by their intimate partners were stalked by these partners before they were killed. All stalkers should be considered unpredictable and very dangerous.
4. Stalking is harmful and intrusive.
Stalking victims often lose time from work or never return to work, and some even relocate to regain a sense of safety. Many suffer from anxiety, insomnia, and severe depression as a result of being stalked.
5. Anyone can be stalked -- not just celebrities.
The vast majority of stalking victims are ordinary people. Furthermore, most stalkers are not strangers, but are known by their victim.
6. Stalking can occur during a relationship, after a relationship, or in the absence of a relationship.
Stalking often begins during a relationship. Stalkers may keep the victim under surveillance or threaten him or her. Others begin stalking after the victim has ended the relationship, and the stalker feels desperate to maintain or regain control. Still others become fixated on a victim without ever having had any relationship with the person. All forms of stalking are unpredictable and all should be considered dangerous.
7. Technology can be used to stalk.
Although newly-developed technology enhances our lives, it can also empower criminals. Cell phones, computers, and surveillance equipment are just some of the technologies stalkers now use.
8. An effective response to stalking includes the entire community.
Police, prosecutors, advocates, educators, reporters, neighbors... everyone can and should play a part in stopping stalking. Working together, we can make victims safer.
9. You can make a difference.
Visit www.ncvc.org/src to learn more about stalking and how to fight it.
10. Help is available.
If someone you know is being stalked, call 1-800-FYI-CALL for assistance.
This information was provided by the National Center for Victims of Crime and the Stalking Resource Center.
For more information, visit www.ncvc.org.