Criminal harassment, which is similar to stalking, is a crime that Wisconsin courts don’t take lightly. If you’re charged with stalking, you could also be charged with criminal harassment—and your penalties will increase if you’re convicted. For most people, it makes sense to talk to a criminal harassment defense attorney serving all Wisconsin, including Milwaukee and Waukesha in a situation like this.
What is Criminal Harassment?
Criminal harassment is what Wisconsin law defines as a course of conduct (a “course of conduct” involves two or more acts, over any period of time) or certain acts against a victim. If you intended to “harass or intimidate” the victim, the state considers it criminal harassment. The law says you can be convicted if you strike, shove, or kick the person, or if you:
- Otherwise subject the person to physical contact
- Attempt to subject the person to physical contact
- Threaten to subject the person to physical contact
If you engage in a course of conduct or repeatedly commit acts that harass or intimidate someone, provided that the acts have no legitimate purpose, you can go to jail.
What Are the Penalties for Criminal Harassment?
Criminal harassment is typically what’s known as a Class B forfeiture. You could have to pay up to $1,000 in penalties if you’re convicted.
However, in some cases, criminal harassment is a Class A misdemeanor or a Class I, Class H, or Class F felony.
- Class A misdemeanor: If you’re convicted of harassment as a Class A misdemeanor, you could be imprisoned for up to 9 months and pay a fine of up to $10,000.
- Class I felony: If you’re convicted of this crime as a Class I felony, you could be sentenced for up to 3 years, 6 months of imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Class H felony: Criminal harassment as a Class H felony carries a penalty of 6 years of imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Class F felony: This crime as a Class F felony can result in 12 years, 6 months of imprisonment and a fine of up to $25,000.
Do You Need to Talk to a Milwaukee Lawyer About Criminal Harassment?
If you’ve been accused of criminal harassment, we may be able to help you.
Call us right away; the sooner you call, the sooner we can begin developing a strategy that gets you the best possible outcome.
Call 414-383-6700 or, if it’s easier, you can also contact us online to set up your free criminal harassment consultation with an experienced attorney.