Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Stalking is a Crime

“Renni! He’s found you.”

Blood pounded in her head threatening to drown out her mother’s voice.

“John across the street said a strange man watched our house for two hours this morning. He pulled away when John came outside to go to work. He described the man, the car, and even copied the plate number. It’s him, Renni.” (unedited excerpt 
from Hemphill Towers)

By the time stalking by a predator reaches this level, it has usually been going on for some time. Many women miss the subtle hints or choose to ignore them as just an annoyance. In Renni’s case, she realized her boyfriend had become controlling. She also knew he’d rather see her dead than let her go.

If a woman sees the same man wherever she goes, notices him repeatedly driving past her house, or receives unwanted phone calls or gifts, she very likely has a stalker.  The word ‘unwanted’ sets apart a stalker from an admirer. It is better to contact the police at this point and err on the side of caution.

One should keep a journal of harassing phone calls, gifts (good ones or bad), times and dates a person watches your house, and of those chance encounters.

Online stalking has risen due to ease of internet access. The ability to switch from one ID to another makes online stalking difficult to prove. It can come in the form of email, chat room conversations, stealing personal info and posting it on the net for others to see, and just anything to harass or intimidate. If possible, get the person's IP address.

Don’t be paranoid about stalking, but never ignore that small inner voice that tells you something isn’t quite right about a person’s actions. Protect your private information, and in this day and age of online hackers, that’s not an easy task. Thankfully, most states now have anti-stalking laws making it easier to go after a perpetrator. 


  1. This is a great, informative post, Leona! We can never be too careful in this day and age. Social media is a wonderful thing, but has made it easier for creeps to harass others. Thanks for raising awareness. The way you handled the issue in Hemphill Towers was realistic and thought-provoking.

  2. Thank you, Mysti and Von. Stalking is more prevalent than people realize. I have a good online friend who was tracked for a year by an online predator, a so called preacher, at that. He made her life a living hell by obtaining her home address and phone number. Now, she is paranoid. She won't tell anybody her real name, not even me. I don't blame her at all.

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  4. Leona's writing abilities are of course beyond doubt. However, to apply them to such a topical and terrifying subject as this shows not just her courage, but her commitment to the exposure of much that is not well with the human condition. There is too little by far written on this subject, and that which is, unfortunately lacks the engaging quality of the words that fall upon my retina from this article. To "dramatize" such misdemeanor seems a strange phrase, for is it not in reality dramatic, indeed, horrific enough. Instead, What Leona has done is to bring home the reality of this nightmare, so often ending in tragedy. Why men, and sometimes women, behave in this way is, thankfully beyond the comprehension of most of us. However, some, for misguided reasons of their own, go down this strange , lonely and dangerous path. Thank you, Leona, for bringing this much neglected, yet far too prevalent problem to the fore, with such eloquence and understanding.

  5. Thank you, Kevin, for your very kind words. I appreciate you stopping by and reading the post. Stalking is the sad result of sick, depraved or vindictive people. Too often, the perpetrator is a family member.

  6. Great post, Leona. I have a friend who is a former homicide detective who picked up a stalker. If she can get one, anyone can. And like your friend, she's very circumspect about what she shares on line.
    Probably the two most important pieces of advice you give are Be Aware and Trust Your Insticnts. I have a cousin who is in law enforcement and that's what he'says, too. The police would rather you report and it not be anything than you stay quiet. Hard for some women who are conditioned not to make a scene. This is a time we need to make a scene.

  7. You are right, Marsha. Anybody can pick up a stalker, and I imagine there are some who like the challenge of a person being in law enforcement.

    Thank you for your comments.


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