In Wisconsin, stalking is a broad term. If you’ve been charged with stalking, your first step should be to call a Milwaukee criminal defense lawyer; it’s a serious crime, and a conviction could change your life.
What Counts as Stalking in Wisconsin?
If you’ve intentionally acted in a way that you know will cause someone emotional distress, or to fear injury or death, you could be charged with stalking in the state of Wisconsin. Emotional distress can include making someone feel terrified, threatened, or tormented, as well as intimidated or harassed.
While the term stalking usually conjures images like those we see on television: someone sits outside an apartment in a dark car and watches. But it’s not limited to what we typically think of. Harassing phone calls, secret videos, and even periodic unwanted contact may count as stalking in Wisconsin.
A former Milwaukee police officer, Alex Lopez, was charged with the felony stalking of his ex-girlfriend last year, but he instead pleaded guilty to unlawful use of a phone; that’s a misdemeanor. His case revolved around sending the woman over 400 messages in a three-week timeframe.
Also last year, a 24-year-old woman from South Milwaukee was charged with six felonies after snooping in her boyfriend’s email, swiping a handful of adult photos and using them to cause emotional distress to his former girlfriends.
What Are the Consequences of Stalking in Wisconsin?
Stalking can be a Class I, Class H or Class F felony. If you’re convicted, you could spend a substantial amount of time behind bars and end up paying hefty fines.
Working with a Milwaukee Lawyer Who Understands the Court System
It’s important to call an attorney right away if you’re charged with stalking – before you even say a word to police or detectives. This will help ensure that your rights are protected under Wisconsin law, regardless of whether you’ve actually committed any crime.