Welcome to the National Center for Victims of Crime

We are the nation's leading resource and advocacy organization for crime victims and those who serve them. Please join us as we forge a national commitment to help victims of crime rebuild their lives.

U.S. Virgin Islands

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 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:

Protection Orders

A protective order is a legal order issued by a state court that requires one person to stop harming and/or contacting another. Each state may have several types of protective orders: civil protective orders, criminal protective orders, or restraining orders, and they may have different names (for example, in Pennsylvania, there are “protection from abuse” orders). Some protective orders are specific to domestic and interfamilial violence, while others are broader, covering stalking, harassment, sexual assault, and other types of misconduct. An individual can get a protection order when the perpetrator is proven to have acted with intent to cause the victim emotional distress or fear for his/her safety, even when the perpetrator has not been charged or convicted. They permit the victim to call the police to have the abuser arrested if the abuser violates any part of the order.

Click here for more information on protection orders in U.S. Virgin Islands.

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 the Virgin Islands.

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.

Protection Orders

§ 1471. Short title and declaration of purpose

(a) This chapter may be cited as “The Virgin Islands Civil Procedure for Victims of Stalking Act” and its general purposes are to:

(1) Assure that victims of stalking are granted the maximum protection from abuse that the law can provide;

(2) Create a flexible and speedy remedy to discourage violence and harassment against individuals who are not related to the alleged perpetrator or others with whom the perpetrator has continuing contact;

(3) Expand the ability of the Virgin Islands Police Department and law enforcement officers to assist victims, to enforce the law effectively in cases of stalking, and to prevent further incidents of abuse;

(4) Develop a greater understanding within the Virgin Islands community of the incidences and causes of stalking;

(5) Facilitate equal enforcement of the criminal laws of the Territory by deterring and punishing violence against individuals who are not personally involved with the offenders; and

(6) Recognize that stalking is a serious crime that adversely affects its victims and which will no longer be excused or tolerated.

(b) This chapter must be liberally construed to protect all victims of stalking and to ensure that they receive equal access to judicial protection.

Back to Top

Criminal Stalking Laws

14 V.I.C. § 2071. Definitions. (2005)
As used in this chapter:

(a)  "Course of conduct" means knowing and willful action directed at a specific person, composed of a series of acts 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."

(b)  "Credible threat" means an explicit or implicit threat made with the intent and the apparent ability to carry out the threat, so as to cause the person who is the target of the threat to reasonably fear for their safety or the safety of a member of the person's family.

(c)  "Harass" means to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which would cause a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress.
 
14 V.I.C. § 2072. Stalking prohibited; degrees of offense; punishment. (1994)

(a)  A person is guilty of the crime of stalking who purposely and repeatedly follows another person and engages in a course of conduct or makes a credible threat with the intent of annoying or placing that person in reasonable fear of death or bodily harm or injury. Any person convicted of the crime of stalking shall be imprisoned for a period not to exceed 18 months, or may be fined up to $7,500, or both.


(b)  A person who commits a second or subsequent offense of stalking shall be imprisoned for a period not to exceed 5 years, or may be fined up to $15,000, or both and shall be required to obtain psychological or emotional assistance as determined by the court. Provided, however, a person who is convicted of a third or subsequent offense, shall be imprisoned for not less than one month and not more than 5 years, or may be fined up to $15,000, or both.

(c)  A person is guilty of the crime of aggravated stalking who commits the crime of stalking in violation of an existing court order prohibiting the behavior and shall be imprisoned for a period not to exceed 5 years, or may be fined up to $15,000, or both.

(d)  A person is guilty of the crime of aggravated stalking who commits the crime of stalking which involves a crime of violence as defined in Title 23, section 451, subsection (e) of this code and shall be imprisoned for a period not to exceed 5 years, or may be fined up to $15,000, or both.

(e)  The provisions of this section shall not apply to conduct which occurs during organized group picketing.

VI ST T. 14 § 465 Cyber-stalking and cyber-harassment prohibited. (2013)
(a) Whoever transmits any communication by computer or other electronic device to any person or causes any person to be contacted for the sole purpose of harassing that person or his or her family is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both.

(b) For the purpose of this section, “harassing” means any knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person which seriously alarms, annoys, or bothers the person, and which serves no legitimate purpose.

(c) The course of conduct must be of a kind that would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress, or be in fear of bodily injury.

(d) As used in this section, “course of conduct” means a pattern of conduct comprised of a series of acts over a period of time, evidencing a continuity of purpose. Constitutionally protected activity is not included within the meaning of “course of conduct.”

(e) A second or subsequent conviction under subsection (a) of this section shall be deemed a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than two (2) years, by a fine of not more than six thousand dollars ($6,000), or both.

Back to Top