So … yesterday I discovered that the gate to our apartment was mysteriously broken. I am trying not to imagine myself in the middle of an episode of Law & Order, however, I am not taking any chances after Friday’s stalker incident. My roommates and I have put in a request to change the lock with our landlord and included the information in the packet my roommate is filing for her restraining order.
Over the past few days I have combed the Internet researching stalkers, crime statistics and police resources. What I have learned is that stalking only became a crime about 20 years ago in most states and authorities are still collecting statistics about it. The figures I have uncovered indicate that most victims are female and that one in five is attacked by their stalker. The information I have surfaced shows that the majority of stalkers have some sort of psychological disorder (obviously) and that most do not take the medication required to keep their condition under control. Nearly half re-offend and most within a year.
The information I found is also conflicting at times. Some sites say not to file a restraining order and not to ignore the stalker because it only makes them angry and desperate. Other sites provide more information about building your case against the individual which include filing a restraining order. I also discovered that my roommate’s stalker appears to fall under the category of an “obsession stalker” and displaying the classic signs of being in the “tension building phase.” Guess what phase two is? Violence against the victim and his/her family members. Awesome.
Naturally, this has led me to investigate California gun laws. My dear friend Ryan is going to take me to the shooting range in January when I return to San Francisco. People at work have offered to give me their personal alarms. I said no. We have knives in our house and the way I see it, if the stalker breaks into my house he is losing an eye – not his hearing temporarily.
In the meantime I have put together a wish list for Santa asking for the following: pepperspray, handcuffs, night vision goggles, a wicked big hunting knife, rope, a .22, and an apartment with a doorman. Emily has already offered to purchase a bright pink .22 that will match my Miss Swiss Army knife. I told her as long as it comes with a matching diamond studded holster. I want to show that I am not messing around.
Editor’s note: In all seriousness, if anyone has information about how to handle a real stalking situation or good resources to investigate, I would appreciate the feedback. Thanks.