The term “stalking” is used to describe specific kinds of behavior directed at a particular person, such as harassing or threatening. The behavior serves no legitimate purpose and shows a course or pattern of conduct. Stalking isn’t just waiting for someone, or making unwanted phone calls. Stalking can be a variety of things from leaving unwanted gifts, countless e-mails, text messages, vandalizing your property, using technology to keep tabs on you, and even continued contact with a third party. Needless to say, all of these stalking behaviors cause the victim to be fearful, and feel helpless. As a victim of stalking, there are several things you can do to help prepare as you make reports to police, and to protect yourself from physical harm:
- If you are immediate danger, call 911
- Trust your instincts. If you feel that you are in danger, you very well could be.
- Contact a victim advocate. You can go over your options like applying for a relief from abuse order, no trespass orders, and other options for keeping you safe.
- Make a safety plan.
- Start a stalking log(pdf)
- Carry a stalking sack.
The Rutland County Women’s Network and Shelter can help. If you are a victim of stalking and need more information or assistance, please contact us 24 hours a day at 802-775-3232