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What is Stalking?

Did you know that California has some of the harshest, most comprehensive stalking laws in the country? To start with, a Los Angeles stalking conviction falls under the area of California law known as the "wobbler law". This means that instead of classifying the crime as either a misdemeanor or a felony, the law lets the prosecution decide. Based on such factors as the circumstances of the charge, your criminal history and whether or not the prosecution likes you or not, he or she will decide to charge you with a felony or a misdemeanor stalking crime. But to make matters worse, there are exceptions to the wobbler rule where the law requires a stalking charge – even a first time offense – to be prosecuted as a felony.

Whether charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, the penalties are harsh. For example, with a felony conviction you could be looking at up to five years in a state prison. For a misdemeanor charge, the penalties include a jail sentence of up to one year in a county jail plus a potential maximum fine of $6,000.00. As if this wasn’t enough, both a misdemeanor and a felony stalking conviction could land you on the California sex offender registry.

Clearly, a Los Angeles stalking conviction should be avoided. To ensure that you case is argued in the best light, it is important that you seek the advice of an experienced California defense attorney, such as attorney Jonathan I. Kelman. The Law Offices of Jonathan I. Kelman specializes in defending California stalking charges and, practicing exclusively in criminal defense, is well-positioned to defend you.

Defending You Against Your Los Angeles Stalking Charge

Stalking is defined by California Penal Code section 646.9. According to the law, stalking is the repeated following, harassing and/or threatening another person to the point that he or she fears for their own personal safety or the safety of their family. In order to be convicted of stalking, the prosecution must prove that you:

  • Willfully, maliciously and repeatedly followed or harassed another person;
  • Made a credible threat against that person;
  • Did so with the specific intent to place that individual in reasonable fear for their safety or the safety of their immediate family.

Of course each of these elements are also areas where your California criminal defense attorney can argue against, either via pre-trial motions or before a judge or jury.

Remember, when your future is on the line, call the Law Offices of Jonathan I. Kelman at 310.286.1218 for your free initial consultation.

Office Locations

12711 Ventura Blvd.
Ste. 410
Studio City, CA 91604

11755 Wilshire Boulevard
15th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90025

106 1/2 Judge John Aiso
Ste. #110
Los Angeles, CA 90012

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