In North Carolina, communicating threats, harassment, and stalking are all serious crimes.
Communicating threats occurs when: (1) a person willfully threatens to physically injure another person, or that person’s dependent, sibling, spouse, or property; (2) the threat is made in a manner and under circumstances which would cause a reasonable person to believe that the threat is likely to be carried out; and (3) the person threatened believes that the threatened offense will be carried out. The threat can be communicated orally or in writing, directly, or indirectly or by other means. If the threat is based on some stated condition, so long as there is a reasonable likelihood that the condition will occur, the threat is still a crime. Regardless if the threatened person believes that he or she can contain the threat or conditions exists that the threatened person to believe the threat can be contained, such as presence of law enforcement, a crime is still committed. Communicating Threats is a Class 1 misdemeanor and carries a sentence of up to 120 days in jail.
Harassment occurs when a person communicates any message, by any means and without legitimate purpose, to another person for the purpose of causing that person to feel tormented, terrified, or terrorized.. Harassment is a Class A1 misdemeanor and carries a maximum possible punishment of 150 days in jail.
The act of making harassing phone calls is a separate offense and must be communicated by telephonic means. For purposes of harassing phone calls, harassment includes the use of any words or language to threaten another, to make profane comments to another, or to annoy or disrupt the service of the victim. Harassing phone calls is classified as a Class 2 misdemeanor.
Stalking requires more than one act of harassment which either (1) causes a person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of the person’s immediate family or close personal associates; or (2) causes a person to suffer substantial emotional distress by placing that person in fear of death, bodily injury or continued harassment. Stalking can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor depending on the past conviction record of the offender. Misdemeanor Stalking is a Class A1 misdemeanor, the highest level of misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 150 days in jail. If the offender has a prior conviction for stalking, a new stalking charge is a Class F felony. In cases in which there is a court order entered against the offensive conduct, a stalking charge can become a Class H felony.
Our experienced criminal defense attorneys are able to thoroughly review the facts and allegations that exist and determine what defenses are available. Some common defenses that are available to be used are:
- False accusations by the alleged victim;
- Insufficient evidence;
- Lack of knowledge accusing individual was present;
- Mistaken identity;
- Lack of reasonable complaints.
If you have been charged with communicating threats, harassment, or stalking, you need the help of an experienced attorney to fight for your rights and help ensure you are able to present your strongest defense. At DeMent Askew & Johnson, we have over 40 years of experience and a team of criminal defense attorneys who have decades of experience defending against charges of communicating threats, harassment and stalking in and around Wake and Carteret County. Our attorneys are equipped with the skills and experience to help you. No matter what criminal charges you are faced with we can aggressively defend you. Call us today for a free consultation with one of our criminal defense attorneys at 919-833-5555.
Russell W. DeMent III
Criminal Defense Lawyer
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CRIMINAL DEFENSE SUCCESS
The defendant was stopped for travelling 94 MPH in a 65 MPH zone. Upon approach of the vehicle the Trooper claimed to have detected a strong odor of alcohol, as well as noticed slurred speech and red, glassy eyes. Due to these observations the Trooper had the defendant step out of the vehicle to perform…
Defendant charged with Level 2 DWI with one prior within 7 years. Was facing a potential sentence of 1 year in prison. Defendant attended a treatment program and really changed her life direction while the case was pending. We were able to get the judge to agree to accept the inpatient treatment as credit for…
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Client approaches a DWI roadblock. Smells of alcohol and performs ok on field tests though she does so some signs of NHTSA clues of impairment. She admits to drinking and blows positive for presence of alchol on the portable breath test. She is taken to the mobile breath testing bus at the checkpoint. She is…
Guilty Verdict of Less Significant Charges of Driving with License Revoked and Lane Violation; Charges Included DWI, Driving While License Revoked, and Hit and Run; No Jail Time
Client charged with DWI, driving while license revoked for impaired revocation, hit and run, and driving left of center. She was found on side of the road in driver’s seat 400 yards from a collision, showed clues of impairment on the field sobriety tests and blew a .10 on the breath test. Found not guilty…
Defendant charged with 2 counts of habitual impaired driving on his 7th total offense. Were able to negotiate a plea consolidating the sentence to one term of 28 months in prison where he was facing the potential for 10 years or more.
Evidence Suppressed in DWI Case; Court Holds “No Reasonable and Articulable Suspicion” for Traffic Stop
All evidence suppressed in DWI case for an illegal stop where the LEO observed my client pause in a parking lot for 30 seconds before leaving the lot and then crossed a center line during a turn at an intersection. Held “No reasonable and articulable suspicion” for a traffic stop.
Motion to Suppress and Dismiss Granted for Lack of Probable Cause; No Reliable Evidence Suggesting Impairment After Speeding Stop
Motion to suppress and dismiss granted for lack of probable cause to arrest where my client was stopped for speeding, had an odor of alcohol, glassy eyes, admitted to drinking, as well as showed signs of impairment on the field sobriety tests. The court put little weight on the field sobriety tests because the officer…
Client stopped for speeding. LEO smelled odor of MJ about clients person. LEO search revealed burned MJ blunt. Defendant performed poorly on all physical tests but told the officer he suffered from a herniated disk in his lower back. On the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) eye test there were no clues of impairment. A subsequent…
Officers received a call about a suspicious person. When they arrived on the scene, they found the defendant in the driver’s seat of a vehicle with his music turned up loud. They knocked several times, but the defendant did not answer the door. Officers opened the door and engaged the defendant in conversation. During the…
Not Guilty of DWI with Serious Collision; LEO Failed to Gather Specific Information from Driver Taken to Hospital with BAC of .17
Client charged with driving while impaired. LEOs respond to a serious collision where someone being taken to the hospital in EMS vehicle upon troopers arrival. The vehicle had flipped 2 times and landed in the median. Based upon information obtained at the scene, the LEO finds my client in the hospital with injuries consistent with…
The defendant was stopped because the tinted windows on his car were too dark. When the officer approached the vehicle, the officer was able to smell a strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. Upon the search of the vehicle a bookbag was located that contained digital scales, plastic baggies, a large quantity of…
The defendant was stopped because his tinted windows were too dark. Once the trooper turned on his blue lights, the trooper felt that it took the defendant too long to pull over. The defendant took multiple turns before stopping in a McDonald’s parking lot. According to the trooper, this was a high crime area and…
The defendant was stopped for speeding on the interstate by North Carolina State Highway Patrol. When the troopers approached the vehicle, they immediately noted smelling a strong odor of alcohol and cigarette smoke. They also noticed that there was a child in the car. When the troopers ran the defendant’s information, they discovered that he…
The defendant was involved in a single car accident in which he ran off the road and struck a tree. Officers arrived to the scene and conversed with the defendant. The defendant could not remember where he was coming from and admitted to consuming several beers before driving. After conversing with the defendant, officers’ requested…