Harassment and stalking are often discussed together, with stalking itself amounting to a form of harassment involving the obsessive and unwanted pursuit of a certain individual. This form of harassment can incite fear, distress and a state of constant paranoia the victim.
According to the CPS, the stalking of victims is becoming an increasingly recognised form of domestic abuse, and can take place both offline and online. It often forms an effective tactic of control for abusers, with such intensive monitoring causing disruption to the daily routine of victims, who may become hyper-vigilant and ever fearful of their abuser. Stalking and harassment by abusers not only involves repeated follow and spins on the victim, but can comprise of making numerous (sometimes silent) telephone calls, regularly sending unwanted gifts, and even damaging the property of the victim. Stalking can also vary in regularity and severity - some abusers may use tracking devices and CCTV both in-house and externally, monitoring the victim excessively - on the other hand, stalking may begin as more subtle monitoring of their partners emails and phone.
Abusers have also been known to enrol other individuals in their surveillance of a victim, and this obsessive, fixated behaviour can also turn to threats, and acts of, physical violence as well as criminal damage. Unfortunately, abusers often have access to vast amounts of information about the whereabouts of their spouse, and therefore can use this to make frequent and targeted attacks, as well as giving the illusion of legitimacy for their behaviour. For example, colleagues of a victim may perceive the abuser’s visiting of them at work endearing, though in actuality it is harassment.
Using geolocation, smart tech, dash cams, tracking devices and CCTV to monitor victim at home/outdoors
Sending unwanted gifts
Making unwanted communication via phone, email, social media
Following and spying on the victim whenever they leave the house
Inspecting the victim’s emails and texts
Damaging the victim’s property
If you are suffering from harassment or stalking, it is vital that you get help as quickly as possible. Please contact our specialist team who can support you and explain the options and protection that are available. Please call 999 if you are in imminent danger. In circumstances where calling the emergency services may inflame the situation, you can press 55 once you have dialled 999 and the emergency services will go to the address from where you have called without you having to say anything.