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Stalking per California Penal Code 646.9 most often occurs in the context of a domestic violence case and is alleged as an additional charge to California Penal Code 273.5 or 343(e)(2) in the criminal complaint. Typically after a couple break up, one may have different ideas about whether the relationship should have in fact ended. Therefore, he or she may continue to call or text the other repeatedly. He or she may also decide to follow the other wherever they go. In essence one person is not accepting the fact that the relationship is over and refuses to leave the other alone and thereby decides to cause annoyance, distress and fear in the other person.

Stalking could occur by leaving intimidating messages, making repeated phone calls every day, or sending hundreds of text messages with the intent to cause distress and fear in the victim. To prove stalking, there must be a credible threat of harm to the victim. The threat may be verbal or nonverbal, express or implied. There must also be a pattern of conduct that placed the victim in reasonable fear for his or her own safety or the safety of his or her family members or loved ones.

Stalking is a wobbler in California and may be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending upon the nature of the fear created and the threat of harm to the victim. If convicted of a misdemeanor stalking, defendant may be sentenced up to one year in county jail. Felony stalking has a maximum prison term of 5 years. An experienced defense lawyer, however, will be able to defend a stalking charge for lack of proof or on the ground that there is insufficient evidence to convict.

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Criminal prosecution can affect your health, freedom, employment, and social life. You need help and you need the best criminal defense you can get. At the Law Offices of Tony M. Seyfi, with the state of the art computerized legal research tools and forensic techniques, we will focus on identifying the defenses you may have and will develop numerous challenges to any crime possible.

Our goal is victory for our clients and to keep them from going to jail, and we are confident of our defense strategies. If you would like to discuss your case, call us today for a FREE CONSULTATION and case analysis.

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