Serving Scranton, Tunkhannock and Wyoming County
Law enforcement and prosecutors in Pennsylvania take accusations of harassment or stalking very seriously. The Pennsylvania criminal code defines the crime of harassment as follows:
- Following a person in public places;
- Striking, shoving, kicking, or subjecting a person to physical acts or issuing threats to do so;
- Repeatedly engaging in conduct or activities that have no legitimate purpose;
- Communicating anonymously and regularly with another;
- Communicating threatening, lewd, obscene, or lascivious words,
drawings, language, or caricatures; or
- Communicating repeatedly at very inconvenient times.
On the other hand, the Pennsylvania criminal code defines the offense of stalking as engaging in a series of actions or repeated attempts at communicating with another person, or following another person repeatedly and without legitimate authority. The defendant must carry out the conduct in a way that shows an intent to put that person in fear that he or she will inflict bodily injury or to cause him or her significant emotional stress.
The state may prosecute harassment as a third-degree misdemeanor, which carries up to one year of incarceration upon conviction. Stalking is more severe as it is considered a first-degree misdemeanor. If a person was previously charged with stalking or another offense with the same victim, the state might charge that person with a third-degree felony that is punishable by up to seven years of jail time.
The Peters Law Firm provides effective criminal defense against stalking or harassment charges in the Northeastern Pennsylvania area. In the Scranton area, contact us at (570) 963-1610, Tunkhannock and Wyoming County at (570) 836-0700 or throughout Northeast Pennsylvania at our main office in Clarks Summit by calling (570) 585-0707 or by visiting us. We can provide you with an initial consultation to help you decide the best course of action.