Over 10,000 Criminal Cases Handled in the Denver Area

Is harassment a crime?

On Behalf of | Mar 2, 2022 | Criminal Defense, Criminal Law |

Harassment involves a wide range of behaviors. Here in Colorado, it consists of a person who intentionally attempts to annoy, alarm or otherwise harass. It can also be an obscene gesture or when they strike, shove or kick someone. It can involve using a computer or telephone. It can be a civil lawsuit involving damages or a misdemeanor with criminal charges depending on the circumstances.

What’s the difference?

Harassment is generally considered a crime when it involves the threat of physical harm, stalking or causing fear in the victim. Civil lawsuits are often due to violations of civil rights protected by Title VII. Examples would be the plaintiff enjoying protections on LGBTQ issues or enduring sexual harassment in the workplace. But it could be someone who pursues annoying or unwanted communications. It could then be a criminal charge if the communication violates a restraining order or disregards a warning by law enforcement.

How to fight these criminal charges

Whether it is at the municipal court or state court level, criminal harassment is a Class 3 misdemeanor charge that can involve up to six months in county jail. There can be other lasting consequences — a criminal record involving this charge can impact one’s employability, access to one’s children, or even ability to rent an apartment. So, it is essential to work with an attorney who defends clients against these charges. They can explain the defendant’s behavior, pick apart the prosecutor’s argument, and defend their client’s rights.