Women and Gender Advocacy Center
Common Stalking Tactics
Gifts or Notes:
Stalking may start off as little gifts or notes either given to the victim or left where they will find it. The notes may be pleasant, sexually oriented, or simply off-the-wall depending on the stalker. They typically get worse as the gifts are continually rebuked.
Stalkers work to harass their victims with a continual stream of information so that they know the assailant is always lurking out there.
Most stalkers are very good at tracking their victims. They follow, peep, and record. They usually keep logs or diaries, or memorize as much about the victim as possible. Electronic means of stalking have increased significantly in recent years.
Threats of Violence:
Threats of violence may be a way to get the victim to do the stalker’s bidding. Also, there are stalkers who make no direct threat but do in fact commit acts of violence against their victims. Even if there are no physical threats of harm, continual harassment and surveillance become a very real emotional and psychological threat to victims of stalking.
Legal Harassment Tactics:
Stalkers may file small claims or other legal actions against their victims. These cases are usually eventually dropped, and are strictly used to harass and manipulate the victim.
Libel and/or Slander:
Stalkers may make slanderous (put downs, harmful words and or implications, etc.) remarks to victims’ friends or associates, thereby causing victims damage in both interpersonal relationships and associations in the workplace.
Harassment of Family Members:
Stalkers may resort to harassing family members if they are not able to contact the victim directly. A jealous stalker may make threats to a significant other if they view them as a barrier. Some stalkers may harass victims’ pets.
A stalker may run up large bills on the victim’s calling and credit cards, or go through the mail to disrupt services.
This is a common tactic used by stalkers, causing emotional and financial burden on the victim.
Some stalkers will commit burglary both to further their information gathering as well as spur on their fantasies. Several types of stalkers are known to collect items from their victims residences.