Fairfield Harassment Lawyer
It is easy for an argument between two people texting, messaging, or emailing to escalate to the point where the communications may be considered harassment under Connecticut law. Calls and messages can be exchanged at lightning speed, and angry words that are sent in an instant can also be retained indefinitely. Since messages may be taken out of context, in cases where a violation of harassment law is alleged, it is crucial to ensure that the facts of the situation are presented fully and accurately.
If you are facing criminal harassment charges it is important to consult with a Fairfield harassment lawyer to help present you in the best light possible in your case. A skilled defense attorney can provide you with guidance as to how to proceed during the time leading up to trial and beyond.
Domestic Violence Arrests
Harassment arrests often arise as part of domestic disputes between parties who are related or who have lived together or have parented a child together.
In volatile domestic situations, there is great concern that violence suggested in communications between the parties will manifest itself in actual physical violence, so allegations of harassment are taken very seriously by police.
All Fairfield, Connecticut harassment second-degree arrests report to Bridgeport Court. The Bridgeport court may issue a restraining or protective order which limits or outright forbids contact between the parties involved in the dispute. As the any Fairfield harassment attorney knows, the violation of such a criminal order is a felony offense in Connecticut, so it is important to know how to proceed if an order is in place or is likely to be put into place.
Harassment in the Second Degree
Connecticut law defines two classes of harassment, first degree (felony) and second degree (misdemeanor). Second-degree harassment arrests are defined under Connecticut Code. Essentially, there are three different types of conduct that are considered to violate this statute.
- If one party communicates in writing with the intent to harass, annoy or alarm another party in a manner that is likely to succeed in that objective, that communication constitutes second-degree harassment. Communications that can be held to violate the statute specifically include messages sent by mail, telegraph, fax or by computer network, or “any other form of written communication.” So, text messages, email communications, and social media posts are also covered under the definition.
- When one party uses “indecent or obscene” language in communicating with another party over the phone, that language constitutes harassment in the second degree.
- If a party makes a phone call with the intent to harass, annoy, or alarm. In a manner likely to succeed in doing so, that call can constitute harassment, even if there is no conversation at all.
As a Class C misdemeanor, a Fairfield arrest for harassment in the second degree is punishable by up to three months in jail or a fine of up to $500 or both, making it imperative that an attorney is contacted.
What is Harassment in the First Degree?
First-degree harassment involves communications made by an individual who has been convicted of a prior felony. To constitute harassment, the communications must include a threat to kill or injure another. That communication must be made with the intent to terrorize, alarm, harass or annoy another and it must be made in a manner that is expected to cause alarm or annoyance.
The communication must be made via telephone or in writing, either in paper or electronic format.
What Are the Penalties for First-Degree Harassment?
Harassment in the first degree is classified as a Class D felony with penalties that include up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
Work With a Fairfield Harassment Attorney
An attorney with experience in harassment law can provide guidance regarding compliance with any protective orders as well as the best course of action to take throughout the legal proceedings. Your Fairfield harassment lawyer will serve as your advocate, working to present the facts in the light most favorable to your case to achieve the best outcome.
If you have been charged with a violation of this nature, do not risk compounding the offense and contact our team right away.