Stalking Laws and Defense in Michigan

Representing Clients In Macomb, Washtenaw, Wayne, Genesee County, and all over the State of Michigan.

A man is walking alone at night on a dimly lit street, with an eerie but not overly frightening atmosphere, suggesting a stalking scenario. He casts a long shadow and glances over his shoulder nervously, as if sensing someone following him. Streetlights cast an orange glow, and the silhouettes of buildings loom in the background.

What Constitutes Stalking?

Stalking in Michigan involves repeated and unwanted attention, harassment, or conduct directed at an individual that causes them to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated, threatened, harassed, or molested. It’s a serious offense that can lead to significant legal consequences.

What are Aggravated Stalking Laws?

Aggravated stalking in Michigan is an elevated form of stalking. It occurs when the stalking behavior includes additional aggravating factors such as:

  • Violation of a Court Order: Continuing to stalk someone despite a restraining order or injunction.
  • Prior Conviction: Having a previous conviction for stalking the same victim.
  • Credible Threat: Making a credible threat to kill or injure the victim or their family. Aggravated stalking carries more severe penalties than standard stalking.

Legal Definition and Examples of Stalking Behavior

Stalking behavior in Michigan can include a variety of actions, all aimed at causing distress to the victim.

The Impact of Stalking Charges

Being charged with stalking can have a profound impact on a person’s life. It can lead to arrest, criminal charges, and the social stigma associated with being labeled a stalker. The stress and disruption caused by stalking charges can affect one’s personal and professional life significantly.

Consequences and Penalties under Michigan Law

In Michigan, the penalties for stalking can be severe:

  • Standard Stalking: Classified as a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and fines up to $1,000.
  • Aggravated Stalking: Classified as a felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and fines up to $10,000. Additional penalties can include restraining orders, mandatory counseling, and loss of certain civil rights.

Defending Against Stalking Accusations

Defending against stalking accusations requires a strategic approach and a thorough understanding of the law.

Common Defense Strategies

Several defense strategies can be employed to fight stalking charges in Michigan:

  • Lack of Intent: Demonstrating that the accused did not intend to cause fear or harassment.
  • Mistaken Identity: Proving that the accused was not the person who engaged in the alleged stalking behavior.
  • Consent: Showing that the alleged victim consented to the interactions and did not feel threatened.

Importance of Evidence and Legal Representation

Evidence is crucial in defending against stalking charges. This can include:

  • Communication Records: Emails, text messages, and other communications that show the nature of the interactions.
  • Witness Testimonies: Statements from individuals who can provide an account of the relationship or interactions.
  • Physical Evidence: Any material evidence that can support the defense’s claims. Legal representation is essential in stalking cases. An experienced attorney can help gather evidence, build a strong defense, and navigate the complexities of the legal system.

How Duplessis Law Can Help

At Duplessis Law, we understand the gravity of stalking accusations and the impact they can have on your life. Here’s how we can assist:

  • Comprehensive Case Evaluation: We thoroughly review the details of your case to identify the best defense strategies.
  • Expert Legal Representation: Our experienced attorneys provide strong representation in court, ensuring your rights are protected.
  • Personalized Defense Approach: We tailor our defense strategies to the specific circumstances of your case, focusing on achieving the best possible outcome.
  • Support Throughout the Process: From the initial consultation to the final resolution, we offer continuous support and guidance.

Navigating Michigan’s stalking laws and the potential defenses against such charges is crucial for anyone facing this serious accusation. With the assistance of a knowledgeable legal team like Duplessis Law, you can handle these challenging circumstances more effectively and work towards a favorable outcome. If you need help with a stalking accusation, contact Duplessis Law today to schedule a consultation.