Fairfield Stalking Lawyer
Fairfield, Connecticut Arrests
Video Title: Fairfield, Connecticut Arrests
Uploaded Date: 2/5/2018
Stalking charges and arrests in Fairfield, Connecticut are more common than in the past, possibly because of the increase in online dating sites or the greater attention focused on domestic violence in recent years.
All stalking arrests are referred to Bridgeport Superior Court. That is why a Fairfield stalking lawyer who understands how the courts have applied the laws in circumstances such as yours can serve as an invaluable asset if you have been arrested for stalking. A skilled harassment attorney could guide you through the process to reach the best possible outcome in your case.
Connecticut lawmakers have enacted 4 different degrees of stalking crimes, 3 which are misdemeanors, and 1 which is a felony. One of these charges is Electronic Stalking under CGS § 53a-181f—a newly enacted Connecticut law which prohibits stalking with technology such as a GPS device. For more on fighting Connecticut electronic stalking charges, click here.
Connecticut stalking crimes are defined broadly and encompass a wide range of scenarios. Therefore, it is crucial to work with a Fairfield stalking lawyer attorney who understands how these ambiguous laws have been interpreted and how to formulate the best defensive strategy.
What is Third-Degree Stalking in Fairfield?
One of the less serious stalking crimes is Stalking in the third-degree, defined in CGS § 53a-181e of the Connecticut criminal code. An individual can be arrested for third-degree stalking if they repeatedly follow another person or are lying in wait for someone, and cause that person to fear for their physical safety.
If this repeated pattern of following is committed with reckless disregard of the possibility that it might cause fear, then the offense is considered third-degree stalking which is a Class B misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
However, if an individual commits such acts deliberately, and with the intent to cause fear, then the offense becomes more serious.
What is Second-Degree Stalking in Fairfield?
Stalking in the second degree occurs when an individual repeatedly follows or lies in wait for another person and intentionally causes that person to reasonably fear for their physical safety. The two key elements of the offense are the intent to cause fear and that the act of following actually causes a reasonable fear.
Second-degree stalking is defined in CGS § 53a-181d and is classified as a Class A misdemeanor. As such, it is punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to one year and a fine as high as $2,000.
Fighting First-Degree Stalking Charges
The most serious stalking offense is stalking first-degree as set forth in CGS § 53a-181c of the Connecticut criminal code. An individual can be arrested for first-degree stalking if they are suspected of second-degree stalking (as defined above) and one of the following factors is present:
- The person has a prior stalking conviction
- The pattern of conduct violated a court order
- The person suffering fear for physical safety is under the age of 16
First-degree stalking is a Class D felony with maximum penalties that include up to 5 years in prison and a fine of as much as $5,000.
Hiring a Fairfield Stalking Attorney
Because the definition of stalking is so broad, a wide range of conduct can arguably be charged as criminal stalking. An attorney with experience handling stalking cases understands where the courts have drawn the line in these cases and how different circumstances have been treated in the past and can, therefore, devise the best defense strategy to fight your charges.
If you have been arrested for stalking, then contact a Fairfield stalking lawyer to learn how to avoid mistakes that may compound the offense and start working toward the best possible outcome.