Wilton Harassment Lawyer
Arrests for harassment frequently arise out of domestic disputes. While the offense may not sound serious, the penalties can be, so it is wise to take precautionary measures right away. If you have been arrested for harassing someone, retain the services of a Wilton harassment lawyer. A determined domestic violence lawyer can work diligently to build your defense and ensure you know what to expect throughout the legal process.
Two Degrees of Harassment Arrests
In Connecticut, the crime of harassment is classified as two separate offenses which are quite different, although they both involve electronic or written communications.
First-degree harassment is a felony, while harassment in the second-degree is a misdemeanor. However, both crimes carry the potential for the imposition of a prison sentence and a substantial fine making it important that a Wilton harassment attorney is consulted.
What is Harassment in the Second Degree in Wilton, Connecticut?
Harassment in the Second Degree is defined under Connecticut General Statutes § 53a-183. To be charged under this statute you must be accused of (1) using indecent or obscene language over the telephone, (2) delivering an annoying, harassing, or alarming message over fax, email, regular mail, or social media like Facebook or Instagram, or (3) intentionally making a telephone call that causes annoyance or alarm. This is obviously a very broad statute that encompasses a wide range of behavior, and makes it very easy for the Wilton Police Department to arrest and charge people with harassment in second degree.
What is Felony Harassment in CT?
Harassment in the First Degree is a much more serious crime, and one that is charged much less frequently by the Wilton Police Department. In order to be guilty of harassment in the first degree under Connecticut General Statutes § 53a-182b, you must (1) be a convicted felon, and (2) intentionally make a threat to kill or injure another person by phone, fax, regular mail, email, social media, Facebook, or any other type of electronic communication.
Intent is Often Crucial
In almost all Harassment arrests, the prosecution must prove that an individual acted with specific intent. For that reason, it is vital to preserve as much evidence as possible that can be used to challenge the prosecutor’s case. That includes any evidence from social media, text messages, emails, or anything else which can demonstrate that an individual did not act with the intent to harass, annoy or alarm another.
What are the Penalties for Harassment?
Harassment in the second degree is a Class C misdemeanor that carries up to 90 days in jail, probation, and a possible fine. On the other hand, harassment in the first degree is a Class D Felony charge that carries a maximum of 5 years jail, probation, and a $5000 fine.
Work with an Experienced Wilton Harassment Attorney
The Wilton Police and prosecutors at Norwalk Superior Court take harassment very seriously. With the continuing rise of social media, school violence, and domestic violence, the Wilton Police Department is making more and more arrests for harassment to try and prevent this type of behavior. Therefore, it is especially important you contact a top Wilton criminal attorney today to help fight your case efficiently and as cost effectively as possible.