Home Page > Advice > Stalking and Harassment

Stalking and Harassment

Help and Advice for Victims

From November 25, 2012, stalking will become a criminal offence. Two new specific criminal offences of stalking are being introduced in England and Wales.


• Stalking
• Stalking where there is fear of violence

 

The new offences of stalking and stalking where there is a fear of violence will be created to sit alongside existing offences of harassment in the Protection of Harassment Act 1997 (PHA).


The police will also be given new powers of entry to investigate stalking offences. Until now, the police have only had a right of entry in respect of conduct that puts people in fear of violence.


In addition to the introduction of these new offences, the government is looking at better training and guidance for the police and Crown Prosecution Service so that victims of stalking get the support they deserve.


Detective Inspector Duncan Sales from Hertfordshire’s Harm Reduction Unit said: “We welcome this change in legislation to help us combat this insidious crime. The key to protecting victims and alleviating the fear and harm is through people having the knowledge of what stalking is and what to do about it.

 

“We would always ask victims to contact us to report any offences of stalking or harassment. You can get in touch with police by calling Telephone 101. In an emergency – if there is imminent fear for someone’s safety, ALWAYS call Telephone 999.

 

“To seek advice and guidance, you can also call the National Stalking Helpline Telephone 0808 802 0300 or e-mail Email advice@stalkinghelpline.org.”

 

Stalking is defined as repeated, unwanted intrusions into the victim’s life that cause them to feel scared or distressed. It doesn’t have to include threats of violence and will usually be carried out by someone the victim knows.

 

Stalking isn’t a ‘one off’ crime. It’s a series of incidents – taken in isolation they can appear trivial (bumping into someone outside your house for example or getting text messages) but put them together and they become far more sinister.

 

• Over 1.2 million women and 900,000 men are stalked every year according to the British Crime Survey.

• 8% of women and 6% of men are stalked every year (BCS)

• 19% of women and 12% of men have experienced stalking or harassment at some point in their lives. (BCS)

• 50% of stalking cases involve ex-partners. Statistically these victims are at a higher risk of violence.

• Early intervention in a stalking case is important

 

Hertfordshire Constabulary is committed to providing help and services to those affected by stalking and harassment.

 

Stalking and harassment can be life changing for a victim and their family. It can cause intimidation, loss of jobs and put a huge strain on relationships.

 

Officers are trained to support victims and are dedicated to bringing those responsible to justice.

 

Please click on the links on the left hand side for more information.

 

Downloads

 

Download Adobe PDF Document You can download a Put a Stop to Stalking Poster here

 

Download Adobe PDF Document You can download a Stalking Helpline Poster here

 

Download Adobe PDF Document You can download an Essential Information Leaflet here