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Stalking and Harassment in Pennsylvania

Stalking is defined in Pennsylvania criminal statutes as repeatedly following or committing other acts upon a person with intent to place the person in reasonable fear of bodily injury, or otherwise cause the person substantial emotional distress.

Harassment is defined as the intent to annoy or alarm the other person by repeatedly committing acts that serve no legitimate purpose.

Penalties for stalking carry a maximum of 5 years in prison for a first offense, as a Misdemeanor 1. For a second stalking conviction, or if there is a prior domestic violence conviction, the charge rises to a Felony 3, with a maximum of 7 years in prison.

Harassment is either a Summary Offense or Misdemeanor 3. A 3rd degree misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail.

Source: Title 18 PS ยง2709

Note that a JAIL sentence would be served in a local or county facility, while a PRISON sentence would be served in either a State or Federal facility.


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