How Does Texas Define Stalking?

Posted on in Criminal Law

texas defense lawyerDomestic violence can take many different forms; in fact, it does not even require physical contact. Sometimes, simply a person’s presence is enough to constitute the crime. Stalking is one example of this.

In the State of Texas, a person may be convicted of stalking if their behavior causes someone to fear for their safety.

Stalking Charges in San Antonio 

Stalking encompasses a wide range of behavior and could include verbal communication, trespassing on the victim’s property, and repeatedly following the victim. If these actions make the victim fear there is imminent danger to themselves, their family, or their property, the actions may constitute stalking. 

Examples of stalking include:

  • Repeatedly sending threatening text messages
  • Frequently appearing near someone’s house or residence
  • Frequent following
  • Trespassing on the victim’s property repeatedly

Interestingly, the State of Texas does not require the perpetrator to communicate the threats themselves. They can direct someone else to stalk the person and still be found guilty of the crime.

Stalking Conviction Consequences

Stalking is a serious offense that is charged as a felony in the State of Texas. A conviction triggers harsh penalties, including a potential fine of up to $10,000 and a prison sentence between two and ten years.

There are also residual penalties. With a felony on your record, it may be difficult to find gainful employment or secure a loan.

Is Stalking the Same as Harassment?

Stalking is different from harassment. In Texas, stalking is a felony offense while harassment is only a misdemeanor. Thus, stalking carries much harsher penalties.

The elements of the crime also differ. Harassment encompasses behavior that is meant to annoy or alarm the victim; stalking is much more sinister, contemplating behavior that makes serious harm feel imminent.

Contact an Experienced San Antonio Stalking Defense Lawyer

A conviction for a serious crime, such as stalking, can turn your life upside down. It can throw your entire future into doubt, raising terrifying questions, including, “Will I go to jail?” “Will I lose my job?”

With so much at stake, having an experienced criminal defense attorney by your side is critical. They can ensure your rights are honored and that you are treated fairly from the moment after arrest.

Law Offices of Sam H. Lock is an advocate for justice that believes every defendant, no matter the charge, is entitled to fair treatment. Our lawyers have dedicated their careers to holding law enforcement accountable, ensuring they perform due diligence at each stage of the process.

If you need a San Antonio criminal defense attorney, contact Law Offices of Sam H. Lock today at 210-226-0965 for a free initial consultation.

Source:

https://www2.texasattorneygeneral.gov/files/cvs/stalking.pdf

 

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