|For decades, the label "stalker’ has been tattooed as a gender-specific crime, committed by men. Things have changed drastically. Twelve to 13-percent of all stalkers are female. Although less in statistical number than males, female stalkers are just as predatory and dangerous.
Stalking, for the most part, is about relationships—prior, desired, or imagined. Sixty-percent of stalkers have a personal relationship with their victims before the stalking begins. However, 22% of stalking cases involve complete strangers.
Researchers and psychologists identify three categories of stalking:
·Simple Obsession Stalking – 60% of stalking cases are represented in this category, which includes all previous personal relationships (i.e.,husbands/wives,boyfriends/girlfriends, domestic partners). This category is best defined as, "If I can’t have you, nobody will.’
·Love Obsession Stalking – The make-up of this category involves a stalker and victim who are casual acquaintances or complete strangers. The goal of the stalker is to establish a personal relationship with the object of his or her obsession—in disregard to the victim’s desires.
·Erotomania Stalking – This category consists of deluded individuals who believe a relationship already exists between themselves and their victim.
A recent case of female stalking involved actor Michael Douglas and his wife Catherine Zeta-Jones as the victims. "When women engage in stalking behavior, they are as tenacious and as intrusive as their male counterparts, and are just as likely to threaten or damage property,’ said Dr. Rosemary Purcell, in the 2003 article "Female stalkers pursue doctors, psychiatrists.’ The FBI estimates that two-percent of all stalking cases conclude in homicide. Twenty-five of female stalking cases have escalated to interpersonal violence. Also revealed in a study is the fact that female stalkers chased their victims to establish intimacy.
As of August 17, 2004, five women in Georgia have been convicted for the crime of aggravated stalking. This level of stalking means an individual has been identified as an assailant in the court system and has violated a court order.
On any given day, you could be one of thousands who feel like they are being stalked.
About the author:
C.F. Jackson is the author of "Won't Be Denied", poet, and mentor, who graduated from Georgia Southern University with a degree in Criminal Justice. C.F. Jackson is at work on her second novel.
Visit www.cfjackson.usto learn more.
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