Amy Clark, Stalking Abuse Survivor Helped Advocate for Tougher Laws
Austin, Texas — The Texas Council on Family Violence today praised Governor Rick Perry for signing a new law that will place Texas at the forefront of our nation’s response to intimate partner stalking. Nationally, 3 of 4 victims are stalked by someone they know.
Stalking: SB 82 by Texas Senator Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, alters the stalking statute to allow juries to hear more about the relationship between the victim and the stalker.
“The connection between stalking and physical or sexual abuse — and in many cases, murder — is staggering. This law will ensure that prosecutors have the tools at their disposal to effectively prove this charge and to get a victim out of harm’s way before it is too late,” said Senator Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound.
The Texas Council on Family Violence and stalking survivors like Amy Clark advocated for the passage of the new bill to strengthen the law in Texas to protect victims of stalking. The bill passed both chambers of the legislature with 100% support.
Amy Clark, a Texas woman one of an estimated 3.4 million Americans who are stalked, feared for her life after she broke it off with her ex-boyfriend.
“He followed me constantly. He showed up at my home where I had three other roommates, he showed up at my work, he hid and waited by my car. I was scared and lived in constant fear for my life,” said Clark.
“TCFV spent time and energy finding the most effective ways to hold stalkers accountable,” said Gloria A. Terry, TCFV president. “Law enforcement, prosecutors, judges, crime victims, advocates and survivors agree that these are the changes needed to strengthen the laws in Texas.”
Stalking is a felony crime in Texas. Stalking can be difficult to recognize, investigate and prosecute. Unlike other crimes, stalking is not a single, easily identifiable crime. It is a series of acts, a course of conduct directed at a specific person that causes a person to fear. Stalking may take many forms including assault, threats, vandalism, burglary, unwanted cards, gifts or visits. One in four victims reports that the stalker uses technology: such as computers, global positioning system devices or hidden cameras to track the victim’s daily activities.
The Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV), formed in 1978, is one of the largest domestic violence coalitions in the nation. TCFV promotes safe and healthy relationships by supporting service providers, facilitating strategic prevention efforts, and creating opportunities for freedom from domestic violence. www.tcfv.org.