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Missouri

Local Resources

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 address confidentiality and 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. Find services and/or an advocate in your county using the following links:

Address Confidentiality

Address confidentiality programs allow victims of stalking, sexual assault, domestic violence, or other types of crime to receive mail at a substitute address, which keeps their actual address private and prevents offenders from locating the victim through public records. Mail is sent to the legal substitute address, often a post office box, and then forwarded to the victim’s actual address. The substitute address can be provided whenever the victim’s address is required by a public agency.

Click here for more information on the Address Confidentiality Program in Missouri.

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 Missouri.

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.

Address Confidentiality

The Missouri State Address Confidentiality Program assists crime victims who have relocated. Click here to find help with your application in your county. Click here to learn more about what the program in your state covers.

Contact Information

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Criminal Stalking Laws

R.S.Mo. § 565.225. Crime of stalking -- definitions – penalties. (2008)
1. As used in this section, the following terms shall mean:

(1)  "Course of conduct", a pattern of conduct composed of two or more acts, which may include communication by any means, over a period of time, however short, evidencing a continuity of purpose. Constitutionally protected activity is not included within the meaning of course of conduct. Such constitutionally protected activity includes picketing or other organized protests;

(2)  "Credible threat", a threat communicated with the intent to cause the person who is the target of the threat to reasonably fear for his or her safety, or the safety of his or her family, or household members or domestic animals or livestock as defined in section 276.606, RSMo, kept at such person's residence or on such person's property. The threat must be against the life of, or a threat to cause physical injury to, or the kidnapping of, the person, the person's family, or the person's household members or domestic animals or livestock as defined in section 276.606, RSMo, kept at such person's residence or on such person's property;

(3)  "Harasses", to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that serves no legitimate purpose, that would cause a reasonable person under the circumstances to be frightened, intimidated, or emotionally distressed.

2. A person commits the crime of stalking if he or she purposely, through his or her course of conduct, harasses or follows with the intent of harassing another person.

3. A person commits the crime of aggravated stalking if he or she purposely, through his or her course of conduct, harasses or follows with the intent of harassing another person, and:

(1)  Makes a credible threat; or

(2)  At least one of the acts constituting the course of conduct is in violation of an order of protection and the person has received actual notice of such order; or

(3)  At least one of the actions constituting the course of conduct is in violation of a condition of probation, parole, pretrial release, or release on bond pending appeal; or

(4)  At any time during the course of conduct, the other person is seventeen years of age or younger and the person harassing the other person is twenty-one years of age or older; or

(5)  He or she has previously pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of domestic assault, violation of an order of protection, or any other crime where the other person was the victim.

4. The crime of stalking shall be a class A misdemeanor unless the person has previously pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of a violation of this section, or of any offense committed in violation of any county or municipal ordinance in any state, any state law, any federal law, or any military law which, if committed in this state, would be chargeable or indictable as a violation of any offense listed in this section, in which case stalking shall be a class D felony.

5. The crime of aggravated stalking shall be a class D felony unless the person has previously pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of a violation of this section, or of any offense committed in violation of any county or municipal ordinance in any state, any state law, any federal law, or any military law which, if committed in this state, would be chargeable or indictable as a violation of any offense listed in this section, aggravated stalking shall be a class C felony.

6. Any law enforcement officer may arrest, without a warrant, any person he or she has probable cause to believe has violated the provisions of this section.

7. This section shall not apply to activities of federal, state, county, or municipal law enforcement officers conducting investigations of violation of federal, state, county, or municipal law.

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