What does it mean to stalk someone?

What does it mean to stalk someone? : Stalking is defined as a pattern of unwanted behavior , directed at a specific person, which causes that person to change their routine or feel afraid, nervous or in danger Examples of stalking behaviors include: Repeated, unwanted phone calls, texts, messages, etc that may or may not be threatening

What does it mean to stalk someone?

What is the meaning of stalking a girl? : The term “stalking” refers to the act of a man following or making contact with a woman despite the woman’s blatant lack of interest or keeping track of how she uses the Internet or other forms of electronic communication.
What does I’m stalking you mean? : Stalking is the act of closely observing someone or something as it moves. The verb to stalk means to pursue carefully, and often covertly, so if you’re a very famous movie star, it’s quite likely that someone is stalking you even as you read this sentence.
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While helpful to professionals dealing with victims, such reading may be overwhelming, and sometimes alarming, to victims who have experienced lesser behaviours from their stalkers.

As a recent successful prosecution has shown, more serious acts by stalkers, such as causing grievous bodily harm, are caught by the criminal law.

The suggestion that we should make stalkers into policemen means that we should expect them to carry out the duties of the police.

It is essential that the investigative powers of the police should be available to identify the stalker and bring him to justice.

But one had to recognise that that did not deal with the problem of the unidentified stalker.

I ampersuaded that the additional powers are needed for the police to deal effectively with stalkers.

Misery was being caused by stalkers with whom the women involved had never had a relationship.

Stalkers do not stick to the activities on a list.

Stalkers know that certain actions do not necessarily break the law.

In some cases, some sort of legal sanction had finally beenimposed on the stalker.

Only a few weeks ago another party of stalkers were compelled to leap for their lives when a car was driven straight at them.

These examples are from corpora and from sources on the web Any opinions in the examples do not represent the opinion of the Cambridge Dictionary editors or of Cambridge University Press or its licensors

[/lightweight-accordion]What does it mean to go stalking? : Stalking is defined as engaging in behavior directed at a specific person that would reasonably cause them to fear for their safety or the safety of others or to experience severe emotional distress.
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Stalking is unwanted and/or repeated surveillance by an individual or group toward another person.[1] Stalking behaviors are interrelated to harassment andintimidation and may include following the victim in person or monitoring them. The term stalking is used with some differing definitions in psychiatry and psychology, as well as in some legaljurisdictions as a term for a criminal offense.[2][3]

According to a 2002 reportby the U.S. National Center for Victims of Crime, “virtually any unwanted contact between two people that directly or indirectly communicates a threat or places the victim in fear can be considered stalking”,[4] although in practice the legalstandard is usually somewhat stricter.


In 1995 a research paper titled “Stalking Strangers and Lovers” was among the first to use the term “stalking” to describe the common occurrence of males after a breakup who aggressively pursue their female formerpartner.[5][6] Prior to that paper instead of the term “stalking”, people more commonly used the terms “female harassment”, “obsessive following” or “psychologicalrape”.[6][7][8]

Having been used since at least the 16th century to refer to a prowler or a poacher (Oxford English Dictionary), the term stalker was initially used by media in the 20th century todescribe people who pester and harass others, initially with specific reference to the harassment of celebrities by strangers who were described as being “obsessed”.[10] This use of the word appears to have been coined by the tabloid press in the United States.[11] With time, the meaning of stalking changed and incorporated individuals being harassed by their former partners.[12]Pathé and Mullen describe stalking as “a constellation of behaviours in which an individual inflicts upon another repeated unwanted intrusions and communications”.[13] Stalking can be defined as the willful and repeated following, watching or harassing of another person.[14]Unlike other crimes, which usually involve one act, stalking is a series of actions that occur over a period of time.

Despite the fact that stalking is generally prohibited, some of the behaviors that contribute to it, such as information gathering, phone calls, texts, gifts, emails, and instant messaging, may be acceptable under certain circumstances. When they go against the accepted definition of harassment (e. g. sending a text is not typically illegal, but becomes unlawful when done repeatedly to an unwilling recipient). In fact, the harassment incident only needs to occur twice for the harasser to know their behavior is unacceptable, according to UK law (e.g. g. , two gifts, two phone calls to strangers, stalking the victim and calling them, etc. ). [15]

Cultural norms and meaning affect the way stalking is defined. Scholars note that the majority of men and women admit engaging in various stalking-like behaviors following a breakup, but stop such behaviors over time, suggesting that “engagement in lowlevels of unwanted pursuit behaviors for a relatively short amount of time, particularly in the context of a relationship break-up, may be normative for heterosexual dating relationships occurring within U.S. culture.”[16]

Psychology and behaviors

People characterized asstalkers may be accused of having a mistaken belief that another person loves them (erotomania), or that they need rescuing [15] Stalking can consist of an accumulation of a series of actions which, by themselves, can be legal, such as calling on the phone, sending gifts, orsending emails [17]

Threats, violence, and intimidation can all be used by stalkers to frighten their targets. They might damage property and commit acts of vandalism, or they might attack people physically with the intention of frightening them. Sexual assaults are much less common. [15].

Intimate partner stalkers are the most dangeroustype.[1] In the UK, for example, most stalkers are former partners and evidence indicates that mental illness-facilitated stalking propagated in the media accounts for only a minority of cases of allegedstalking.[18] A UK Home Office research study on the use of the Protection from Harassment Act stated: “The study found that the Protection from Harassment Act is being used to deal with a variety of behaviour such as domestic and inter-neighbour disputes. It is rarelyused for stalking as portrayed by the media since only a small minority of cases in the survey involved such behaviour.”[18]

Psychological effects on victims

Disruptions in daily life necessary to escape the stalker, including changes in employment, residence and phone numbers, take a toll on the victim’s well-being and may lead to a sense of isolation [19]

According to Lamber Royakkers:[17]

Stalking is a form of mental assault, inwhich the perpetrator repeatedly, unwantedly, and disruptively breaks into the life-world of the victim, with whom they have no relationship (or no longer have). Moreover, the separated acts that make up the intrusion cannot by themselves cause the mental abuse, but do taken together (cumulative effect).

Stalking as a close relationship

Stalking has also been described as a form of close relationship between theparties, albeit a disjunctive one where the two participants have opposing goals rather than cooperative goals. One participant, often a woman, likely wishes to end the relationship entirely, but may find herself unable to easily do so. The other participant, often but not always a man, wishes to escalate the relationship. It has been described as a close relationship because the duration, frequency, and intensity of contact may rival that of a more traditional conjunctive datingrelationship.[20]

Types of victims

Based on work with stalking victims for eight years in Australia, Mullen and Pathé identified different types of stalking victims dependent on their previous relationship to the stalker. Theseare:[12]

  • Prior intimates: Victims who had been in a previous intimate relationship with their stalker. In the article, Mullen and Pathé describe this as being “the largest category, the most common victim profile being a woman who has previously shared an intimate relationship with her (usually) male stalker.” These victimsare more likely to be exposed to violence being enacted by their stalker especially if the stalker had a criminal past. In addition, victims who have “date stalkers” are less likely to experience violence by their stalkers. A “date stalker” is considered an individual who had an intimate relationship with the victim but it wasshort-lived.[12]
  • Casual acquaintances and friends: Among male stalking victims, most are part of this category. This category of victims also includes neighbor stalking. This may result in the victims’ change ofresidence.[12]
  • Professional contacts: These are victims who have been stalked by patients, clients, or students who they have had a professional relationship with. Certain professions such as health care providers, teachers, and lawyers are at a higher risk forstalking.[12]
  • Workplace contacts: The stalkers of these victims tend to visit them in their workplace which means that they are either an employer, employee, or a customer. When victims have stalkers coming to their workplace, this poses a threat not only to the victims’ safety but to the safety of other individuals aswell.[12]
  • Strangers: These victims are typically unaware of how their stalkers began stalking because typically these stalkers form a sense of admiration for their victims from adistance.[12]
  • The famous: Most of these victims are individuals who are portrayed heavily on media outlets but can also include individuals such as politicians andathletes.[12]


Although stalking is a gender-neutral behavior, studies confirm that the majority of victims are female and that the primary perpetrators aremale [21] As for the victims, a January 2009 report from the United States Department of Justice reported the rate of stalking victimization for female was approximately 2% and for male was approximately0 7% [22] As for the perpetrators, many studies have shown that approximately 80-90% of stalking perpetrators are male [21]

According to one study, women oftentarget other women, whereas men primarily stalk women.[21][23] A January 2009 report from the United States Department of Justice also reports that “Males were as likely to report being stalked by a male as by a female offender. 43% of male stalking victims stated that the offender was female, while 41% of male victims stated that the offender was another male. Female victims of stalking were significantly more likely to be stalked by a male (67%) rather than a female (24%) offender.” This report provides considerable data by gender and race about both stalkingand harassment,[22] obtained via the 2006 Supplemental Victimization Survey (SVS), by the U.S. Census Bureau for theU.S. Department of Justice.

In an article in the journal Sex Roles, Jennifer Langhinrichsen-Rohling discusses how gender plays a role in the difference between stalkers and victims. She says, “gender is associated with the types of emotional reactions that are experienced by recipients of stalking related events, including the degree of fear experienced by thevictim.” In addition, she hypothesizes that gender may also affect how police handle a case of stalking, how the victim copes with the situation, and how the stalker might view their behavior. She discusses how victims might view certain forms of stalking as normal because of gender socialization influences on the acceptability of certain behaviors. She emphasizes that in the United Kingdom, Australia, and the United States, strangers are considered more dangerous when it comes to stalking thana former partner. Media also plays an important role due to portrayals of male stalking behavior as acceptable, influencing men into thinking it is normal. Since gender roles are socially constructed, sometimes men don’t report stalking. She also mentions coercive control theory; “future research will be needed to determine if this theory can predict how changes in social structures andgender-specific norms will result in variations in rates of stalking for men versus women over time in the United States and across the world.”[16]

Types of stalkers

Psychologists often group individuals who stalk into two categories:psychotic and nonpsychotic [10] Some stalkers may have pre-existing psychotic disorders such as delusional disorder,schizoaffective disorder, or schizophrenia However, most stalkers are nonpsychotic and may exhibit disorders or neuroses such asmajor depression, adjustment disorder, or substance dependence, as well as a variety ofpersonality disorders (such as antisocial, borderline, ornarcissistic) The nonpsychotic stalkers’ pursuit of victims is primarily angry, vindictive, focused, often including projection of blame,obsession, dependency, minimization, denial, andjealousy Conversely, only 10% of stalkers had an erotomanic delusional disorder [25]

In “A Study of Stalkers” Mullen et al.(2000)[26] identified five types of stalkers:

  • Rejected stalkers follow their victims in order to reverse, correct, or avenge a rejection (e.g. divorce, separation, termination).
  • Resentful stalkers make a vendetta because of a sense of grievance against the victims – motivated mainly by the desire to frighten anddistress the victim.
  • Intimacy seekers seek to establish an intimate, loving relationship with their victim. Such stalkers often believe that the victim is a long-sought-after soul mate, and they were ‘meant’ to be together.
  • Incompetent suitors, despite poor social or courting skills, have afixation, or in some cases, a sense of entitlement to an intimate relationship with those who have attracted their amorous interest. Their victims are most often already in a dating relationship with someone else.
  • Predatory stalkers spy on the victim in order to prepare and planan attack – often sexual – on the victim.
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In addition to Mullen et al., Joseph A. Davis, Ph.D., an American researcher, crime analyst, and university psychology professor at San Diego State University investigated, as a member of the Stalking Case Assessment Team (SCAT), special unit within the San Diego District Attorney’s Office, hundreds of cases involving whathe called and typed “terrestrial” and “cyberstalking” between 1995 and 2002. This research culminated in one of the most comprehensive books written to date on the subject. Published by CRC Press, Inc. in August 2001, it is considered the “gold standard” as a reference to stalking crimes, victimprotection, safety planning, security and threat assessment.[27]

The 2002 National Victim Association Academy defines an additional form of stalking: The vengeance/terrorist stalker. Both the vengeance stalker and terrorist stalker (the latter sometimes called the political stalker) do not, in contrast with some of the aforementioned types of stalkers, seek a personalrelationship with their victims but rather force them to emit a certain response. While the vengeance stalker’s motive is “to get even” with the other person whom he/she perceives has done some wrong to them (e.g., an employee who believes is fired without justification from a job by a superior), the political stalker intends to accomplish a political agenda, also using threats andintimidation to force the target to refrain or become involved in some particular activity regardless of the victim’s consent. For example, most prosecutions in this stalking category have been against anti-abortionists who stalk doctors in an attempt to discourage the performance of abortions.[28]

Stalkers may fit categories with paranoia disorders. Intimacy-seeking stalkers often have delusional disorders involving erotomanic delusions. Withrejected stalkers, the continual clinging to a relationship of an inadequate or dependent person couples with the entitlement of the narcissistic personality, and the persistent jealousy of the paranoid personality. In contrast, resentful stalkers demonstrate an almost “pure culture of persecution”, with delusional disorders of the paranoid type, paranoid personalities, andparanoid schizophrenia.[26]

One of the uncertainties in understanding the origins of stalking is that the concept is now widely understood in terms of specificbehaviors[22] which are found to be offensive or illegal As discussed above, these specific (apparently stalking) behaviors may have multiple motivations

In addition, the personality characteristics that are often discussed as antecedent to stalking may also produce behavior that is notconventionally defined as stalking. Some research suggests there is a spectrum of what might be called “obsessed following behavior.” People who complain obsessively and for years, about a perceived wrong or wrong-doer, when no one else can perceive the injury—and people who cannot or will not “let go” of a person or a place or an idea—comprise a wider group of persons that may be problematic in ways that seem similar to stalking. Some of these people get extruded from their organizations—theymay get hospitalized or fired or let go if their behavior is defined in terms of illegal stalking, but many others do good or even excellent work in their organizations and appear to have just one focus of tenacious obsession.[29]


Cyberstalking is the use of computers or other electronic technology to facilitate stalking. In Davis (2001), Lucks identified a separate category of stalkers who instead of a terrestrial means, prefer to perpetrate crimes against their targeted victims through electronic and online means.[30]Amongst college students, Ménard and Pincus found that men who had a high score of sexual abuse as children and narcissistic vulnerability were more likely to become stalkers. Out of the women who participated in their study, 9% were cyberstalkers meanwhileonly 4% were overt stalkers. In addition, the male participants revealed the opposite, 16% were overt stalkers while 11% were cyberstalkers. Alcohol and physical abuse both played a role in predicting women’s cyberstalking and in men, “preoccupied attachment significantly predicted cyber stalking”.[31]

Stalking by groups

According to aU S Department of Justice special report a significant number of people reporting stalking incidents claim that they had been stalked by more than one person, with 18 2% reporting that they were stalked by two people, 13 1% reporting that they had been stalked by three or more The report did not break down these cases into numbers of victims who claimed to have been stalkedby several people individually, and by people acting in concert A question asked of respondents reporting three or more stalkers by polling personnel about whether the stalking was related to co-workers, members of a gang, fraternities, sororities, etc , did not have its responses indicated in the survey results as released by the DOJ The data for this report was obtained via the 2006 Supplemental Victimization Survey (SVS), conducted by theU S Census Bureau for the Department of Justice [22]

According to a United Kingdom study by Sheridan and Boon, in 5% of the cases they studied there was more than one stalker, and 40% of thevictims said that friends or family of their stalker had also been involved In 15% of cases, the victim was unaware of any reason for the harassment [32]

Over a quarter of all stalking and harassment victims do not know their stalkers in any capacity. About a tenth responding to the SVS did not know the identities of their stalkers. 11% of victims said they had been stalked forfive years or more.[22]

False claims of stalking, “gang stalking” and delusions of persecution

In1999, Pathe, Mullen and Purcell wrote that popular interest in stalking was promoting false claims [33] In 2004, Sheridan and Blaauw said that they estimated that 11 5% of claims in a sample of 357 reported claims of stalking werefalse [34]

According to Sheridan and Blaauw, 70% of false stalking reports were made by people experiencing delusions, stating that “after eight uncertain cases were excluded, the false reporting rate was judged to be 11.5%, with the majorityof false victims suffering delusions (70%).”[34] Another study estimated the proportion of false reports that were due to delusions as 64%.[35]

Gang stalking, also known as group stalking, is a set of persecutory perceptions in which those who are targeted feel followed, stalked, and harassed by a sizable group of people. [36] The phrase refers to the intended person (T. I. ) virtual community made up of like-minded people who claim that their lives are disrupted as a result of being followed by malicious organizations. [37][38].

A 2020 study by Sheridan et al. gave figures for lifetime prevalence of perceived gang-stalking at 0.66% for adult women and 0.17% for adultmen.[39]

Epidemiology and prevalence


According to a study conducted by Purcell, Pathé and Mullen (2002), 23% of the Australian population reported having been stalked.[40]


Stieger, Burger and Schild conducted a survey in Austria, revealing a lifetime prevalence of 11% (women: 17%, men: 3%).[41] Further results include: 86% of stalking victims were female, 81% of the stalkers were male. Women were mainly stalked by men (88%) while men were almost equally stalked by men and women (60% male stalkers). 19% ofthe stalking victims reported that they were still being stalked at the time of study participation (point prevalence rate: 2%). To 70% of the victims, the stalker was known, being a prior intimate partner in 40%, a friend or acquaintance in 23% and a colleague at work in 13% of cases. As a consequence, 72% of the victims reported having changed their lifestyle. 52% of former and ongoingstalking victims reported having a currently impaired (pathological) psychological well-being. There was no significant difference between the incidence of stalking in ruraland urban areas.

England and Wales

In 1998, Budd and Mattinson found a lifetime prevalence of 12% in England and Wales (16% female, 7% males) [42] In 2010/11, 57% of stalking victims were found to be female, and 43% weremale [43]

According to a paper by staff from the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre, a unit established to deal with people with fixations on public figures, 86% of a sample group of 100 people assessed by them appeared to them to have apsychotic illness; 57% of the sample group were subsequently admitted to hospital, and 26% treated in the community [44]

A similar retrospective study published in 2009 inPsychological Medicine, based on a sample of threats to the Royal Family kept by the Metropolitan Police Service over a period of 15 years,suggested that 83.6% of these letter-writers had a serious mental illness.[45]


Dressing, Kuehner and Gass conducted a representative survey in Mannheim, a middle-sized German city, and reported a lifetime prevalence of having been stalked of almost12%.[46]

United States

Tjaden and Thoennes reported a lifetime prevalence (being stalked) of 8% in females and 2% in males (depending on how strict the definition) in the National Violence Against Women Survey.[47]

Laws on harassment and stalking


Every Australian state enacted laws prohibiting stalking during the 1990s, with Queensland being the first state to do so in 1994. The laws vary slightly from state to state, with Queensland’s laws having the broadest scope, and South Australian laws the most restrictive. Punishments vary from a maximum of 10 years imprisonment in some states, to a fine for thelowest severity of stalking in others. Australian anti-stalking laws have some notable features. Unlike many US jurisdictions they do not require the victim to have felt fear or distress as a result of the behaviour, only that a reasonable person would have felt this way. In some states, the anti-stalking laws operate extra-territorially, meaning that an individual can be charged with stalking if either they or the victim are in the relevant state. Most Australian states provide the option of arestraining order in cases of stalking, breach of which is punishable as a criminal offence. There has been relatively little research into Australian court outcomes in stalking cases, although Freckelton (2001) found that in the state of Victoria, most stalkers received fines orcommunity based dispositions.


Section 264 of the Criminal Code, titled “criminal harassment”,[48] addresses acts which are termed “stalking” in many other jurisdictions. The provisions of the section came into force in August1993 with the intent of further strengthening laws protecting women.[49] It is a hybrid offence, which may be punishable upon summary conviction or as anindictable offence, the latter of which may carry a prison term of up to ten years. Section 264 has withstood Charter challenges.[50]

The Chief,Policing Services Program, for Statistics Canada has stated:[51]

… of the 10,756 incidents of criminal harassment reported to police in 2006, 1,429 of these involved more than one accused.


The act of simple stalking is not illegal in China. However, criminal responsibility will be accepted if there is any further infringement. For instance, those who steal personal information face a fixed-term prison sentence of up to three years or criminal detention, as well as a fine or a fine; if the circumstances are particularly serious, they face a fixed-term prison sentence of up to seven years, with a fine. Anyone caught breaking into someone else’s home faces a fixed-term sentence of up to three years in prison or criminal detention.

According to Article 253 of Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, Anyone who violates relevant state regulations by selling or providing citizens’ personal information to others, and the circumstances are serious, shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not more than three years or criminal detention, together with a fine or a fine; where the circumstances are particularly serious, three Fixed-term imprisonment for not less than one year but not more thanseven years, and a fine Anyone who violates relevant state regulations and sells or provides personal information of citizens obtained in the course of performing duties or providing services to others shall be severely punished in accordance with the provisions of the preceding paragraph Whoever steals or illegally obtains citizens’ personal information by other means shall be punished in accordance with the provisions of the first paragraph If a unit commits the crimes mentioned in thepreceding three paragraphs, the unit shall be fined, and the persons directly in charge and other persons directly responsible shall be punished in accordance with the provisions of the respective paragraphs [52]

Or according to Article 245 of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, anyone who illegally searches another person’s body or residence, orillegally invades another person’s residence, shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not more than three years or criminal detention Judicial personnel who abuse their powers and commit the crimes mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall be severely punished [52]

Unfortunately, under the current judicial system in Mainland China, there is a lack ofjudicial protection for individuals facing illegal stalking, harassment, surveillance, and other stalking behaviors Even public figures may not be able to solve it for a long time when faced with stalking of illegitimate meals [53] Many cases across China have shown that ordinary people who have been stalked may still be unable to solve the problem after they seek help from the judicialauthorities In the case of Wuhu, Anhui in March 2018, the entangled woman repeatedly rescued the police to no avail and was eventually killed [54] In the homicide case in Laiyuan, Hebei in July of the same year, women and their families who hadbeen stalked and harassed for a long time also helped the police repeatedly to no avail It didn’t end until the opponent broke into the home with arms and was killed by victim’s parents [55]

In the social culture of mainland China, the “stalker” type of courtship is highly respected, that is, as the saying goes, “good women (martyrs) are afraid ofstalkers”.[56][57] Literary works also publicly promote such behaviors, and stalking between opposite sexes is thus beautified as courtship.[58] In real life, this typeof behavior may even occur when the two parties do not know each other and the stalked person does not know in advance. Through online platforms and other social media, with the help of the convenience of online communication, individuals and institutions directly participate in, promote, and support various “courtship-style” tracing and stalking cases.[59]


Article 222–33–2 of the French Penal Code (added in 2002) penalizes “Moral harassment,” which is: “Harassing another person by repeated conduct which is designed to or leads to a deterioration of his conditions of work liable to harm his rights and his dignity, to damage his physical or mental health or compromise his career prospects,” with a year’s imprisonment and a fine ofEUR15,000.[60]

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The German Criminal Code (§ 238 StGB) penalizes Nachstellung, defined as threatening or seeking proximity or remote contact with another person and thus heavily influencing their lives, with up to three years of imprisonment. The definition is not strict and allows “similar behaviour” to also be classified asstalking.


In 2013, Indian Parliament made amendments to the Indian Penal Code, introducing stalking as a criminaloffence.[61] Stalking has been defined as a man following or contacting a woman, despite clear indication of disinterest by the woman, or monitoring her use of the Internet or electronic communication. A man committing the offence of stalking would be liable for imprisonment up to three years for the first offence, and shall also be liable to fine and for any subsequent conviction wouldbe liable for imprisonment up to five years and with fine.


Following a series of high-profile incidents that came to public attention, a law was proposed in June 2008 which became effective in February 2009 (D.L. 23.02.2009 n. 11) making a criminal offence under the newly introduced art. 612 bis of the penal code, punishable with imprisonment ranging from six months up to five years, any “continuative harassing, threatening or persecuting behaviourwhich: (1) causes a state of anxiety and fear in the victim(s), or; (2) ingenerates within the victim(s) a motivated fear for his/her own safety or for the safety of relatives, kins [sic], or others tied to the victim him/herself by an affective relationship, or; (3), forces the victim(s) to change his/her living habits”. If the perpetrator of the offense is a subject tied to the victim by kinship or that isor has been in the past involved in a relationship with the victim (i.e., a current or former spouse or fiancé), or if the victim is a pregnant woman or a minor or a person with disabilities, the sanction can be elevated upto six years of incarceration.[62][63][64][65]


In 2000, Japan enacted a national law to combat this behaviour, after the murder of Shiori Ino.[66] Acts of stalking can be viewed as “interfering [with] thetranquility of others’ lives” and are prohibited under petty offence laws.


In the Wetboek van Strafrecht, Article285b[67] defines the crime of belaging (harassment), which is a term used for stalking

Article 285b:

1. One who unlawfully, systematically, and deliberately intrudes into someone’s personal environment with the intention to force the other to act in a way, or toprevent one to act in a certain way or to induce fear, will be prosecuted for harassment, for which the maximal punishment is three years and a fine of the fourth monetary category.2. The prosecution will only take place after a complaint of the person who is the victim of the crime.


Article 208 of the 2014 Criminal Code states:-

Article 208: Harassment

  • The act of someone who repeatedlyfollows, without right or a legitimate interest, a person or his or her home, workplace or other place frequented, thus causing a state of fear.
  • Making phone calls or communication by means of transmission, which by frequent or continuous use, causes fear to a person. This shall be punished with imprisonment from one to three months or a fine if the case is not a more serious offense.
  • Criminal action is initiated by prior complaint of the victim.
  • Russia

    In the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, such an independent corpus delicti as stalking is absent. However, lawyers argue that the persecution of a person in Russia can also be seriously fined. The victim of stalking only needs to use the articles that are already in the code. So, if the persecutor uses threats, then should refer to Article 119 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Threats of murder or causing grievous bodily harm”. In this case,the offender is punished with compulsory labor for up to 480 hours or forced labor for up to 2 years. Also, the persecutor may face arrest for up to six months or imprisonment (restriction) of freedom for up to two years. “Violation of privacy” (Article 137 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation) can also be applied part of stalking. This crime manifests itself in the illegal collection of information about private life and its dissemination (including in public speeches and the media).For this, a criminal can receive a fine of up to 200 thousand rubles, go to compulsory work for up to 360 hours, and even be imprisoned for two years. In addition, persecutors often violate Article 138 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation Violation of the secrecy of correspondence, telephone conversations, postal, telegraph and other messages of citizens. The article provides for punishment ranging from a fine of 80 thousand rubles to correctional labor for up to oneyear.[68]

    However, as similar situations in China, these are not all articles of the Criminal Code that can be applied to stalkers. As result, I.A. Yurchenko, author of Crimes Against Information Security, claims that victims of persecution, in the presence of appropriate circumstances, have the right to use Article 133 of the Criminal Code of the RussianFederation “Compulsion to Sexual Actions” (from a fine of 120 thousand rubles to imprisonment for up to one year), article 139 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Violation of the inviolability of the home” (from a fine in the amount of 40 thousand rubles to imprisonment for two to three years), article 163 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation Extortion (imprisonment up to seven years), article 167 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation Intentional destruction ordamage to property (up to imprisonment in accordance with the gravity of the offense). Indeed, under the listed articles, many Russian stalkers were convicted. For example, a resident of Ufa, who forced his ex-girlfriend to resume relations by means of threats related to exposing her intimate photographs to the public, was found guilty under Articles 133 and 137 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation and sentenced to a fine of 70 thousand rubles. According to some lawyers, the punishmentin such cases is not always commensurate with the crime committed, therefore they propose to include in the Criminal Code of Russia an article similar to § 238 of the Criminal Code of the Federal Republic of Germany, according to which a stalker pursuing a person faces up to 3 years in prison.[68]

    United Kingdom

    Beforethe enactment of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, the Telecommunications Act 1984 criminalised indecent, offensive or threatening phone calls, and theMalicious Communications Act 1988 criminalised the sending of an indecent, offensive or threatening letter, electronic communication, or other article to another person

    Before 1997, no specific offence of stalking existed in England and Wales. However, in Scotland, incidents could be dealt with under pre-existing law, with life imprisonment available forthe worst offences.

    England and Wales

    In England and Wales, “harassment” was criminalised by the enactment of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, which came into force on 16 June 1997. It makes it acriminal offence, punishable by up to six months’ imprisonment, to make a course of conduct which amounts to harassment of another on two or more occasions. The court can also issue a restraining order, which carries a maximum punishment of five years’ imprisonment if breached. In England and Wales, liability may arise if the victim suffers either mental or physical harm as a result of beingharassed (or slang term stalked) (see R. v. Constanza).

    In 2012, then-Prime Minister David Cameron stated that the government intended to make another attempt to create a law aimed specifically at stalkingbehaviour [69]

    In May 2012, the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 created the offence of stalking for the first time in England and Wales, by inserting these offences into theProtection from Harassment Act 1997 The act of stalking under this section is exemplified by contacting, or attempting to contact, a person by any means, publishing any statement or other material relating or purporting to relate to a person, monitoring the use by a person of the Internet, email, or any other form of electronic communication, loitering inany place (whether public or private), interfering with any property in the possession of a person, or watching or spying on a person [70][71]

    The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 also added Section 4(a) into the Protection From Harassment Act 1997 which covered ‘Stalkinginvolving fear of violence or serious alarm or distress’. This created the offence of where a person’s conduct amounts to stalking and either causes another to fear (on at least two occasions) that violence will be used against them, or conduct that causes another person serious alarm or distress which has a substantial effect on their usual day-to-day activities.


    InScotland, behaviour commonly described as stalking was already prosecuted as the common law offence of breach of the peace (not to be confused with the minor English offence of the same description) before the introduction of the statutory offence against s.39 of theCriminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010;[citationneeded] either course can still be taken[72] depending on the circumstances of each case.[73] The statutory offence incurs a penalty of twelve months imprisonment or a fine upon summary conviction, or a maximum of five years’ imprisonment or a fine uponconviction on indictment; penalties for conviction for breach of the peace are limited only by the sentencing powers of the court, thus a case remitted to the High Court can carry a sentence of imprisonment for life.

    Provision is made under the Protection from Harassment Act against stalking to deal with the civil offence (i.e. the interference with the victim’s personalrights), falling under the law of delict. Victims of stalking may sue for interdict against an alleged stalker, or a non-harassment order, breach of which is anoffence.[citation needed]

    United States

    California was the first state to criminalize stalking in the United States in1990[74] as a result of numerous high-profile stalking cases in California, including the 1982 attempted murder of actress Theresa Saldana,[75] the 1988 massacre byRichard Farley,[76] the 1989 murder of actress RebeccaSchaeffer,[77] and five Orange County stalking murders, also in1989 [76][78] The first anti-stalking law in the United States, California Penal Code Section 646 9, was developed and proposed by Municipal Court Judge John Watson of Orange County Watson with U S Representative Ed Royce introduced the law in 1990 [78][79] Also in 1990, the LosAngeles Police Department (LAPD) founded the United States’ first Threat Management Unit, founded by LAPD Captain Robert Martin

    Within threeyears[78] thereafter, every state in the United States followed suit to create the crime of stalking, under different names such as criminal harassment or criminal menace TheDriver’s Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) was enacted in 1994 in response to numerous cases of a driver’s information being abused for criminal activity, with prominent examples including the Saldana andSchaeffer stalking cases [80][81] The DPPA prohibits states from disclosing a driver’s personal information without permission by StateDepartment of Motor Vehicles (DMV)

    The Violence Against Women Act of 2005, amending a United States statute, 108 Stat. 1902 et seq, defined stalkingas:[82]

    “engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to—

    (A) fear for his or her safety or the safety of others;(B) suffer substantial emotional distress.”

    As of 2011, stalking is an offense under section 120a of theUniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) [83] The law took effect on 1 October 2007

    In 2014, new amendments were made to the Clery Act to require reporting onstalking, domestic violence, and dating violence.[84]

    In 2018, the PAWS Act became law in the United States, and it expanded the definition of stalking to include “conduct that causes a person to experience a reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury to his or her pet”.[85]

    Stalking is a controversial crime because a conviction does not require any physical harm.[86] The anti-stalking statute of Illinois is particularly controversial. It is particularly restrictive, by thestandards of this type of legislation.[87]


    The Council of Europe Convention onpreventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence defines and criminalizes stalking, as well as other forms of violence against women.[88] The Convention came into force on 1 August 2014.[89]

    See also

    • Bullying
    • Courtship disorder
    • Cyberstalking
    • Gaslighting
    • Erotomania
    • Obscene phone call
    • Obsessive love
    • Poison pen letter
    • Querulant
    • Secret admirer
    • Serial rapist
    • Surveillance
    • Surveillance abuse
    • Vexatious litigation
    • Voyeurism
    • Yandere
    • Zersetzung


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  • Further reading

    • MINCAVA (2000). “Annotated stalking bibliography”. Minnesota Center Against Violence and Abuse (MINCAVA), University of Minnesota. Archived fromthe original on 3 August2016.
    • Davis, Joseph A. (2001).Stalking crimes and victim protection: prevention, intervention, threat assessment, and case management. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press. ISBN 9780849308116.
    • Meloy, J. Reid (1998). The psychology of stalking: clinical and forensic perspectives. San Diego: Academic Press. ISBN 9780124905603.
    • Dussuyer, Inez (December 2000).Is stalking legislation effective in protecting victims? (PDF). Sydney: Australian Institute of Criminology.CiteSeerX Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 3April2016.Paper presented at the Stalking: Criminal Justice Responses Conference convened by the Australian Institute of Criminology and held in Sydney 7–8 December 2000.
    • “Stalking victims in the United States”. bjs.gov.Bureau of Justice Statistics. 2012.
    • NCVC. “Annotated stalking bibliography”. ncvc.org. U.S. National Center for the Victims of Crime. Archived fromthe original on 28 September 2011.
    • NCVC. “Stalking Resource Center Publications”. ncvc.org. U.S. National Center for the Victims ofCrime.
    • “Stalking information”. victimsofcrime.org. Stalking Resource Center. Retrieved 3 April2016.
    • McFarlane, Judith M.; Campbell, Jacquelyn C.; Wilt, Susan; Sachs, Carolyn J.; Ulrich, Yvonne;Xu, Xiao (November 1999). “Stalking and intimate partner femicide”. Homicide Studies. 3 (4): 300–316. CiteSeerX doi:10.1177/1088767999003004003.S2CID 145522253.

    External links

    READ  What is the T launcher?

    WikimediaCommons has media related to Stalking.

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    • Stalking at Curlie


    Additional Question — What does it mean to stalk someone?

    What is an example of stalking?

    Approaching or confronting someone in a public place or on private property Appearing at one’s workplace, home, or school Entering onto property someone owns, leases, or occupies Contacting someone by phone, postal mail, email, text, social networking sites, etc

    What is the most common type of stalking?

    Simple Obsessional: This is the most common type of stalker The stalker is usually a male and the focus of the stalking is an ex-wife, ex-lover or former boss In intimate relationships, the stalking frequently starts before the break-up

    What does it mean to stalk someone on social media?

    We define stalking as unwanted or compulsive behavior toward a person with the intent to intimidate or coerce. Explicit or implicit threats, blackmail, or even sexual assault may be used in this situation, as well as a barrage of texts, emails, phone calls, and gifts as well as unexpected visits to someone’s home or place of employment.

    What does it mean to stalk someone on Instagram?

    Instagram stalking is the act of using the social media platform to gain information about another person, usually not to their knowledge or with explicit consent There are a lot of reasons why we might do this

    How do you not stalk someone?

    Here are a few suggestions that appear when you Google how to stop stalking your ex: Delete/unfriend/block him. Get some tough love from your friends. Utilize a stalk jar. Stay active. Instead of following your ex, follow a famous person. Replace the stalking with a new habit. Get out there and start dating.

    What is the synonym of stalking?

    ambush, ambushment, surprise (also surprize), trap

    What is a stronger word than obsessed?

    In this page you can discover 35 synonyms, antonyms, idiomatic expressions, and related words for obsessed, like: captivated, fixated, consumed, hung-up, hooked, seized, infatuated, bedeviled, plagued, dogged and beset

    What is the synonym of spying?

    The installation or monitoring of are synonyms for spying. catching is what the verb does. to covertly observe someone or conduct research, particularly into their private life. The act of closely observing someone, frequently in an effort to catch them in misdeeds, is known as surveillance.

    What do you call a watcher?

    In this page you can discover 21 synonyms, antonyms, idiomatic expressions, and related words for watcher, like: observer, spectator, onlooker, guard, bystander, witness, twitcher, watchman, looker-on, shadow and tail

    What is it called when someone watches you?

    A voyeur is someone who likes to watch people without them knowing

    What does the Bible say about the watchers?

    The watchers are bound “in the valleys of the Earth” until Judgment Day (Jude verse 6 says, “And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.”).

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