Understanding the true definition of stalking in Colorado is important for a person who has recently been accused of breaking this law. A person who has been accused of any crime can benefit from speaking to an experienced Denver criminal defense attorney.
Types of Stalking Charges in Colorado
Stalking can be charged at the misdemeanor and the felony level but either one of these situations should prompt you to contact an experienced criminal defender immediately. The case may already have been developed on behalf of prosecutors who have evidence against you and you need to respond thoroughly and appropriately.
It is not considered stalking if you only meet a threat one time, if the threat wasn’t credible, if the threat wasn’t against the person involved or his or her immediate family member or partner, if a reasonable person wouldn’t have been distressed or scared or if the other person was not indeed stressed or scared. The Colorado felony level of stalking includes behavior that is more than merely bothering another individual.
What is a Credible Threat?
These stalking laws in Colorado stipulate that a credible threat and repeated behavior must both exist in order to cause someone sever emotional distress. Stalking is a Colorado felony that could be categorized as an extraordinary risk crime, carrying first time penalties of up to five years in prison with a mandatory two-year parole sentence and a fine of between $1000 and $100,000. In the event that you violated a protective order, however, these consequences might be much more severe.
Credible threats can be made by text, phone, email, actions, gestures, a typed or written letter, or any other means of communication.
The Connection Between Protective Orders and Stalking
You could also serve time for separate misdemeanors if you violated an existing protective order in Colorado and this sentence could be served in addition to and consecutively to your sentence for stalking. One of the most important elements of a stalking allegation is credible threat. This refers to repeated conduct, a physical action or a threat that could cause a reasonable individual to be in fear of their safety or for the safety of their immediate family members or partner.
In all of these situations, it is beneficial to have an experienced Denver criminal defense attorney review your case in full.