Do you have stalkers harassing you on Facebook or making unsolicited calls on your cellphone every night?
Well, if Anti-Stalking Bill filed by Senator Manny Villar gets enacted into law, you could have another legal weapon to fight these offenders.
Senate Bill 2442 [states that a] person commits stalking when he or she harasses another person by doing any of the following:
- making repeated communications anonymously or at extremely inconvenient hours or in offensively coarse language.
- making repeated visits to the victim’s home or workplace;
- following or repeatedly maintaining visual or physical proximity to victim in or about a public place or places; and
- engaging in any other course of alarming conduct.
Under the measure, any person who commits any of these acts shall be punished by arresto mayor in its maximum period (imprisonment from four to six months) to prision correccional in its minimum period (imprisonment from six months to two years and four months) or a fine ranging from P1,000 to P5,000.
But if the offender repeats the crime or if he or she is a family or household member of the victim, the next higher penalty shall be imposed, it said.
[source: GMA News]
Quoting Senator Villar's Explanatory Note in filling the bill;
The Constitution mandates the State to uphold human rights, including the dignity of every human person, and the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose.
Further, the Civil Code provides:
"Art. 26. Every person shall respect the dignity, personality, privacy and peace of mind of his neighbors and other persons. The following and similar acts, though they may not constitute a criminal offense, shall produce a cause of action for damages, prevention and other relief:
(1) Prying into the privacy of another's residence;
(2) Meddling with or disturbing the private life or family relations of another;
(3) Intriguing to cause another to be alienated from his friends;
(4) Vexing or humiliating another on account of his religious beliefs, lowly station in life, place of birth, physical defect, or other personal condition."
These legal rights are violated by "stalking," which is an act described herein as harassing, bothering, frightening and otherwise interfering with the private lives of people. The act is a form of disguised intimidation which may be a subtle attempt at harassment.
Existing civil and criminal remedies are insufficient to prevent the commission of the act. This bill therefore, seeks to define and penalize the acts constituting the crime of stalking.
Tsk. Tsk. Facebook stalkers beware!