Is Stalking a Felony Offense in Florida?

Stalking is a serious offense. The Florida Statute 784.048 defines stalking as "willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly following, harassing, or cyberstalking" another person.

Initially, stalking may be charged as a misdemeanor. However, it can escalate to a felony offense under certain conditions, such as when the perpetrator makes a credible threat or when the stalking behavior is repetitive and causes significant emotional distress to the victim.

Stalking: When It’s a Misdemeanor vs. a Felony

Stalking is considered a first-degree misdemeanor. This type of offense is punishable by up to one year in jail, one year of county probation, and a fine of no more than $1,000.

As we mentioned, stalking can be charged as a felony. Specifically, aggravated stalking is a felony of the third degree.

Aggravated stalking is a more severe form of stalking. If the stalker makes a credible threat with the intent to place the victim in fear of death or bodily harm, it becomes a third-degree felony. A person can also be charged with aggravated if the victim is under 16 years old or if the perpetrator violates an injunction or court order against stalking.

Third-degree felonies are punishable by up to five years of imprisonment and a fine of up to $5,000. You can also be placed on probation for five years.

What to Do If You Are Facing Stalking or Aggravated Stalking Charges

Being charged with aggravated stalking or stalking can be a daunting experience. The first step after being charged is to find a skilled criminal defense attorney. Look for one who specializes in stalking and harassment cases and has a solid track record.

If you are arrested or taken into custody, remember, anything you say can be used against you in court. It's best to avoid making any statements to law enforcement officers until your attorney is present. This will protect you from inadvertently incriminating yourself.

In addition to helping protect your rights, your attorney can help you build your defense strategy, which may involve disproving the prosecution's evidence, presenting an alibi, or showing that you didn't intend to cause harm or fear. Your attorney can also help you:

  • Understand the pretrial release process

  • Determine whether a plea bargain or trial is your best option

  • Prepare for trial

  • Consider post-conviction options

Experienced Counsel for Your Defense

The Law Offices of Phillip T. Ridolfo, Jr. represents clients in felony offense cases. If you are charged with aggravated stalking, you can trust my firm with your defense.

At the heart of my firm's approach is a commitment to personalized attention. Each case is unique, and we believe each defense strategy should be too. As such, I devote time and resources to thoroughly investigating every angle of your case, digging deep into evidence, police reports, and potential witnesses.

My firm also has substantial experience handling complex criminal cases. Over the years, I have successfully defended numerous clients against a range of felony charges. This experience allows me to anticipate potential challenges and craft effective strategies to counter them.

When you reach out to the Law Offices of Phillip T. Ridolfo, Jr., you can expect a comprehensive initial consultation where I will listen to your story, review the details of your case, and discuss potential defense strategies. I can also guide you through the complexities of the legal process, keeping you informed every step of the way.

While no law firm can predict or promise specific outcomes, clients working with the Law Offices of Phillip T. Ridolfo, Jr. can anticipate a committed advocate who will work tirelessly to protect their rights and strive for the best possible outcome. Call (561) 475-2752 torequest a consultation today.


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