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American Samoa

Stalking often occurs along with other crimes, like domestic violence and sexual assault. While there are no state coalitions for victims of stalking, many domestic violence and sexual assault programs are able to provide assistance. Many of the resources can be confusing to navigate, victim advocates are available to talk to you about understanding your states criminal stalking laws. Victim advocates can also assist you with safety planning, keeping a log of stalking incidents, and how to be safe when using technology.

Criminal Stalking Laws

Criminal stalking laws define when a perpetrator may be charged with the crime of stalking, and what infractions are required to bring such a charge. The laws usually define various misdemeanor and felony offenses that correlate with the severity of the transgression. Based on police investigation, a state prosecutor will determine what charges to bring against an offender, and will then file charges against the perpetrator (formally known as an indictment). A trial typically follows, and the defendant may be offered a plea agreement. The criminal statute will also delineate potential punishments, if the perpetrator is convicted, which may include probation, house arrest, and incarceration, among others. Restitution may be requested and awarded to the victim by court order following a conviction, usually at a sentencing hearing.

Click here for more information on criminal stalking laws in American Samoa.

National Resources

  • VictimConnect Resource Center - Confidential information, support and referrals for victims of crime via telephone, chat and text including safety planning and crime reporting.
  • WomensLaw.org - State-specific legal information related regarding protection orders, custody, divorce, state gun laws and more. WomensLaw.org also operates an email hotline where victims, their family/friends and advocates can write to ask legal questions.

Criminal Stalking Laws

A.S. Ann.§ 46.3501. Definitions. (2010)
The following definitions are applicable in this chapter unless the context otherwise requires:

(a) "Criminal homicide" means conduct which causes the death of a person under circumstances constituting murder in the 1st or 2nd degree, manslaughter, or criminally negligent homicide.

(b) "Person", when referring to the victim of a homicide, means a human being who had been born and was alive at the time of the homicidal act.

(c) "Course of conduct" means following by maintaining visual or physical proximity to a specific person or directing verbal, written or other threats, whether express or implied, to a specific person on two or more occasions over a period of time, however short, but does not include constitutionally protected activity.

(d) "Immediate family member" means a spouse, parent, child or sibling or any other person who regularly resides in a person's household or resided in a person's household within the past six months.

A.S. Ann.§ 46.3525. Stalking. (2010)

(a) A person commits the crime of stalking if he purposely or knowingly engages in a course of conduct that is directed toward another person and that conduct:

(1) causes reasonable fear of harm to the physical health, safety, or property of such person, a member of his immediate family, or a third party with whom he is acquainted; or

(2) causes harm to the mental or emotional health of such person after the actor was previously clearly informed to cease that conduct; or

(3) is likely to cause such person to reasonably fear that his employment, business or career is threatened, where such conduct consists of appearing, telephoning or initiating communication or contact at his place of employment or business, and the actor was previously clearly informed to cease that conduct.

(b) Stalking is a class B misdemeanor, unless the offense was committed when there is a temporary restraining order or an injunction, or both, or any other court order in effect prohibiting the conduct by the offender, then it is a Class A misdemeanor.

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