There are a range of stalking charges under New York law, all of them carrying potentially serious penalties if convicted. If the victim of a stalking case is made to fear for his or her safety, charges of stalking can be brought against the accused. If you are being charged with any degree of stalking in New York, you will want to obtain qualified representation right away. David Galison has experience in New York courts and will work hard to defend your rights.
The lowest level of stalking charges is stalking in the fourth degree. This is a class B misdemeanor and can be punished by up to 180 days in prison if convicted. There are a few different qualifications for charges of stalking to be brought, and they are as follows. “A person is guilty of stalking in the fourth degree when he or she intentionally, and for no legitimate reason, engages in a course of conduct directed at a specific person, and knows or reasonable should know that such conduct:
- is likely to cause reasonable fear of material harm
- causes material harm to the mental or emotional health of the victim
- is likely to cause the victim to reasonable fear that his or her employment, business, or career is threatened”
For charges to be escalated to the third degree, the accused must have a history of stalking (but no convictions), or have been previously convicted of committing a crime against the victim or a family member of the victim. This charge is a class A misdemeanor and can bring one year in prison.
Stalking in the second degree requires the display and threat to use a deadly weapon, or a previous conviction on stalking charges. This class E felony can bring multiple years in prison.
The highest charges, stalking in the first degree, are a class D felony which can bring up to 4 years in prison. These charges are warranted if second degree stalking involves a specific sexual offense, or if the offender’s actions cause physical injury to the victim.
Any stalking charge is a serious situation that requires immediate legal attention. Call our office at 516-242-4477 to talk about your options and receive a free consultation. We look forward to your call.