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3Stalking and Harassment Building a strong case MANJULA NAYEE, SENIOR POLICY ADVISOR, CROWN PROSECUTION SERVICE
4PROTECTION OF HARASSMENT ACT 1997 The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is committed to tackling violence against women and girls, which includes stalking as a key priorityProtection of Harassment ActHarassment (section 2): course of conduct = harassment of another . SUMMARY OFFENCE. 6 MONTHSFear of violence (section 4): course of conduct which causes another to fear that violence will be used against him – EITHER WAY OFFENCE- 5 YEARS IMPRISONMENT
5STALKING AND HARASSEMNT-RAISING AWARENESS Raising awareness amongst prosecutorsConsultation.CPS Stalking and Harassment legal guidance was launched in September 2010.It is available on our website at:Model to review all cases now.
6TEAM WORKING CPS + Police+ Victim + Other Agencies = Best evidence Strong caseSafety and support for victim= Successful case
7CASE BUILDING = CONVICTION Early consultation with CPSEssential informationInformation Recorded by VictimsKeeping the victim informedVictim and Witness Support & SafetySpecial measures
8EARLY CONSULTATION Complex cases - Behaviour is prolonged and targeted Victim is at high riskRefer to the CPS as early as possible.Experienced prosecutorCPS Policy and Legal Guidance on prosecuting cases involving Domestic Violence and Stalking and Harassment.
9ESSENTIAL INFORMATION The CPS will ask the police to provide the following background information:the ability and willingness of the victim to testify;the history of any relationships or contact, particularly if there has been violence and/or abuse in the past;If any previous orders made and whether breached;whether the suspect has made any threats since the incident;
10INFORMATION RECORDED BY VICTIMS Instruct victims to keep:a record or diary of eventsentries timed and dated.details of witnesseskeep a record of how the defendant looked, details of their clothing or vehicle;stored messages or tape any calls made by the defendant;inform neighbours and friends.
11KEEPING THE VICTIM INFORMED It is essential that the victim is fully aware of the decisions being made as they may directly impact on the victim's safety.Early consultation with the allocated police officer and contact with the specified Witness Care UnitEnsure any risk to the victim is understood from the outset
12VICTIM PERSONAL STATEMENT A VPS statement gives victims an opportunityto state how the crime has affected them .express their concerns about bail or the fear of intimidation by, or on behalf of the defendant;provide criminal justice agencies, especially the Court with a ready source of information on how a particular crime has affected the victim involved.Particularly useful when drafting restraining orders.
13SPECIAL MEASURES Many victims feel stress and fear when Reporting a crimePolice investigationAttending and giving evidence to a court.Facing the defendant in the courtroomSpecial measures – reassurance and confidenceCPS PROSECUTORS SHOULD APPLY FOR SPECIAL MEASURES AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE.
14Stalking and Harassment Building a strong case MANJULA NAYEE, SENIOR POLICY ADVISOR, CROWN PROSECUTION SERVICE