A stalking protection order is a type of restraining order intended to protect someone from being stalked or cyberstalked. No one should put up with being stalked, no matter what the relationship between the victim and the stalker. Because stalking has the potential to escalate to violence, it is crucial to contact an experienced stalking protection order attorney.
Jennifer Horwitz Law regularly handles all types of restraining order cases, including stalking protection orders. Lead attorney Jennifer Horwitz is keenly aware that stalking is a serious offense that places the victim in fear of being harmed. But she also knows that some individuals can be falsely accused of stalking, particularly in contentious divorce cases.
Whether you need assistance seeking or defending against a stalking protection order, Jennifer Horwitz is a fierce advocate who will fight to protect your interests. Contact her office today to get started.
What Is Stalking?
Under Washington law, a person commits the crime of stalking if he or she intentionally and repeatedly harasses or follows another person, and the person being stalked is placed in fear that the stalker intends to injure that person, another person, or property. The feeling of fear needs to be reasonable under the circumstances. Moreover, it is not a defense if the stalker:
- Was not given actual notice that the person did not want the stalker to contact or follow that person or
- Did not intend to frighten, intimidate, or harass the person
Stalking also includes cyberstalking which occurs when someone intentionally harasses, intimidates, torment, or embarrasses any other person through electronic communication (e.g. email, text message, comment on social media) and either:
- Uses lewd words or suggests the commission of a lewd act
- Anonymously or repeatedly contacts the victim electronically, or
- Threatens to harm the person or property of the victim or a member of their household
If you are being stalked or cyberstalked, it takes an experienced Seattle order of protection attorney to protect your rights, your well-being, and your peace of mind. This is the time to contact Jennifer Horwitz Law. Jennifer Horwitz has in-depth knowledge of the Washington Criminal Code and extensive experience in stalking protection order cases.
Stalking Protection Orders in Washington
A victim (the petitioner) can ask the court for an order of protection that prohibits the alleged stalker or cyberstalker (the respondent) from directly or indirectly contacting the victim.
A stalking protection order can also:
- Keep the respondent from going to the petitioner’s residence, workplace, or school
- Exclude the respondent from the daycare, school, or workplace of the petitioner’s minor children
- Prevent the respondent from putting the petitioner under surveillance – physical or electronic
- Prohibit the respondent from coming or remaining within a specified distance from a specified location
A petition for a stalking protection order is typically filed in district court in the county in which the victim lives. If the alleged stalker caused the victim to flee, however, the petition can either be filed in the old or new county. Also, the district court may transfer the petition to Superior Court when:
- The petitioner, victim, or respondent is under 18 years old
- The action involves title or possession to real property
- A superior court has exercised or is exercising jurisdiction over a proceeding involving the parties
- The action would interfere with a respondent’s care, control, or custody of the respondent’s minor child
Although stalking can impact anyone, regardless of the relationship between the parties, stalking incidents involving family or household members may constitute domestic violence. In these cases, the victim may be better served by filing a petition for a domestic violence protection order.
How Jennifer Horwitz Can Help With Your Stalking Protection Order Case
Stalking is a serious offense that can upend the victim’s life and result in misdemeanor or felony charges against the alleged stalker. Jennifer Horwitz will take the time to understand your circumstances and help you file a petition for a stalking protection order or defend you against one.
Jennifer will work to collect the necessary evidence, identify and interview witnesses, and represent you at the protection order hearing. While she is dedicated to helping stalking victims obtain restraining orders, Jennifer is fully prepared to represent respondents who have been falsely accused of stalking. Above all, she is keenly aware that orders of protection proceedings have far-reaching implications for petitioners and respondents alike and will work to protect your interests.
Contact Our Experienced Washington Stalking Protection Order Attorney
Whichever side of the protection order case you are on, Jennifer Horwitz will be at your side. Jennifer is a highly regarded victim’s advocate as well a seasoned criminal defense attorney. Contact her Seattle office today to discuss your case in confidence.