Are you living in Jacksonville and being affected by a stalker? Do you want a court order to stop the stalker?
Continue reading to find out how to file an Injunction for Protection Against Stalking to protect you or your child!
It can be a very scary experience to be the victim of a stalker, especially if it is someone you know and trusted. There are steps that you can take to protect yourself under the law in Florida that will help give you peace of mind. Florida Statutes section 784.0485 provides for a cause of action for an injunction for protection against stalking, including cyberstalking. A stalking injunction can be filed on your behalf or on the behalf of a minor child if you are the parent or legal guardian of the child and the child is living with you.
In Jacksonville or Duval County, the Stalking injunction process begins with the filing of a sworn Petition for Injunction for Protection Against Stalking that specifically alleges that you are the victim of stalking because the offender has:
- Committed stalking
- Previously threatened, harassed, stalked, cyberstalked, or physically abused the petitioner
- Threatened to harm the petitioner or family members or individuals closely associated with the petitioner
- Intentionally injured or killed a family pet
- Used or threatened to use, against you any weapons such as guns or knives
- A criminal history involving violence or the threat of violence, if known
- Another order of protection issued against him or her previously or from another jurisdiction, if known
- Destroyed personal property, including, but not limited to, telephones or other communication equipment, clothing, or other personal items belonging to the petitioner
Florida Statutes section 784.048 defines “stalking.” A person who commits stalking is willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly following, harassing, or cyberstalking another person. “Harass,” which means to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose. “Course of conduct” means a pattern of conduct composed of a series of acts over a period of time, however short, which evidences a continuity of purpose. “Cyberstalk” means to engage in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose.
Upon the filing of the petition, the court may grant a temporary injunction ex parte, meaning without a hearing, until a full hearing can be held to restrain the respondent from committing any act of stalking. After a full hearing, if the court grants the final injunction and determines that you are the victim of stalking, the court may issue an order restraining the respondent from committing any act of stalking; ordering the respondent to participate in treatment, intervention, or counseling services to be paid for by the respondent; referring you to appropriate services you may need; and order any other relief the court deems necessary.
Navigating the law surrounding stalking can be difficult and you should talk with a knowledgeable and experienced Jacksonville criminal lawyer to help you obtain a successful injunction and stop the stalker from continuing his or her fearful and harassing behavior. Contact the Law Office of David M. Goldman, PLLC, for more information about filing the proper legal documents and successfully prosecuting an injunction so you (or your child) is protected.