Stalking and Harassment
Definition: Persistent and unwanted attention that makes you feel pestered and harassed. It includes behaviour that happens two or more times, directed at or towards you by another person, which causes you to feel alarmed or distressed or to fear that violence might be used against you.
Is this happening to you?
- Repeated unwanted contact, by phone, text, online or in person.
- Being followed or a feeling of being watched by someone as they often seem to know your whereabouts or what you are doing.
- Turning up at your place of work, school or places the person knows you will be.
- Spreading stories about a you to others.
- Finding ways and means to contact you even if the person has been blocked.
- Using threats or pleading with you to meet with them.
- Making you fear that violence will be used. They may have been violent in the past, making this threat feel very real.
- Have legal orders in place to protect you that are breached.
Don’t suffer in silence
- Stalking and harassment can be difficult to identify, making it confusing for you. You may feel like there is no way out of the situation.
- Stalking is a crime and can be described as behaviors from a person that involve fixation and repeated or unwanted attention that results in you feeling distressed or scared.
- You do not have to live in fear support is available.
Actions to consider
- If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, contact the Police immediately by dialling 999.
- Report the incident as early as possible to the Police and tell others what is happening.
- Keep a diary of events. Write down the date, time, location and details of what happens. It’s also a good idea to include information about any other witnesses who can confirm what happened.
- Keep copies of letters, text messages and emails, and take screenshots of other online messages (e.g. on Facebook). Give this evidence to Police.
- Let someone you trust know where you are and update them on where you will be or if you will be running late.
- Ensure you get good practical advice, visit Paladin or call the National Stalking Helpline.
- Check privacy settings on social networking sites and limit the amount of information you put on.
- Be aware of geo-location and tagging on social networking sites and ensure that this is disabled on your smartphone.
- If you believe that your computer or smartphone has been hacked or compromised, stop using them immediately and take them to a specialist such as your mobile phone provider or computer repair experts for advice.
- Speak to someone. Our team of experienced and professional caseworkers are here to support you and can talk with you confidentially.
- Visit Leicestershire Police for first-hand knowledge, industry best practices and practical crime prevention advice from officers and specialist teams all across the police.
Free From Fear Project – Are here to help
This service is available to individuals aged 13+ and can be accessed by individuals or professionals.
Stalking can escalate and result in the loss of life. It can be terrifying and have a significant impact on your day to day life. You do not have to live in fear.
- If you are experiencing stalking or are a professional working with an individual who is, you can refer into this service by phoning: 07966391823
- Alternatively, you can email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Referral forms can be downloaded from Women’s Aid Leicester
How their specialist Stalking Advisor can help:
- They will listen to you and offer emotional and practical support.
- Complete a risk assessment, undertake safety planning and risk reduction through practical advice.
- Encourage and assist you to report incidents of stalking and harassment guiding you through the Criminal Justice process.
- Advise you as to the type of evidence required by the police and how to safely gather information.
- Communicate and liaise with other agencies.
- Signpost you to other services that may be able to offer additional support and reduce the impact of stalking on you and your family.
Victim First Can Provide:
- Emotional Support to cope and recover from the crime
- Information on other agencies
- Advice on Crime Prevention
- Practical support such as a personal alarm or window/door alarm
- Restorative contact between victim and offender
- Support using Language interpreters and British Sign Language interpreters