FEDERAL LEGISLATION!

This just in from the Chief Counsel…

“Just yesterday Senator Leahy introduced legislation to reauthorize the federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).  The legislation includes Sec. 107. Criminal provision relating to stalking, including cyberstalking.   This section updates the federal anti-stalking statute to capture more modern forms of communication that perpetrators use to stalk their victims.  I have attached the draft language for this new definition for your reference:

SEC. 107. CRIMINAL PROVISION RELATING TO STALKING,

INCLUDING CYBERSTALKING.

 

3 Section 2261A of title 18, United States Code, is

4 amended to read as follows:

‘‘§ 2261A. Stalking

 

6 ‘‘Whoever—

7        ‘‘(1) travels in interstate or foreign commerce

8 or is present within the special maritime and

9 territorial jurisdiction of the United States, or enters or

10 leaves Indian country, with the intent to kill, injure,

11 harass, intimidate, or place under surveillance with

12 intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate another

13 person, and in the course of, or as a result of, such

14 travel or presence engages in conduct that—

15               ‘‘(A) places that person in reasonable fear

16 of the death of, or serious bodily injury to—

17                         ‘‘(i) that person;

18                         ‘‘(ii) an immediate family member (as

19               defined in section 115) of that person; or

20                         ‘‘(iii) a spouse or intimate partner of

21               that person; or

22               ‘‘(B) causes or attempts to cause or would

23 be reasonably expected to cause substantial

24 emotional distress to a person described in

25 clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of subparagraph (A); or

JEN11D75 S.L.C.

1        ‘‘(2) with the intent to kill, injure, harass, in

2 intimidate, or place under surveillance with intent to

3 kill, injure, harass, or intimidate another person,

4 uses the mail, any interactive computer service or

5 electronic communication service or electronic

6 communication system of interstate commerce, or any

7 other facility of interstate or foreign commerce to

8 engage in a course of conduct that—

9                 ‘‘(A) places that person in reasonable fear

10 of the death of or serious bodily injury to a

11 person described in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of

12 paragraph (1)(A); or

13               ‘‘(B) causes or attempts to cause or would

14 be reasonably expected to cause substantial

15 emotional distress to a person described in

16 clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of paragraph (1)(A),

17 shall be punished as provided in section 2261(b) of

18 this title.’’.

See attached press release:

http://leahy.senate.gov/press/press_releases/release/?id=0AA06EE7-D9B4-4E40-B635-9D46832A3CBC

Legislative history:

13. S.1925 : A bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994.
Sponsor: Sen Leahy, Patrick J. [VT] (introduced 11/30/2011)      Cosponsors (1)
Committees: Senate Judiciary
Latest Major Action: 11/30/2011 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

US Department of Justice – Violence Against Women Act Office – Stalking Section

http://www.ovw.usdoj.gov/aboutstalking.htm

Also, can you please copy Sen. <insert name of state senator for my district> legislative aide on your reply to this e-mail, so that we are connected as we work on federal and state legislation?  Thanks.”

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