Section 264(2) of the Criminal Code sets out different examples of behaviour that may be considered as criminal harassment:
(a) repeatedly following a person from place to place;
(b) repeatedly communicating with, either directly or indirectly, the other person or anyone known to them;
(c) besetting or watching the dwelling-house, or place where the other person, or anyone known to them, resides, works, carries on business or happens to be; or
(d) engaging in threatening conduct directed at the other person or any member of their family.
An accused person, who does any of these things, knowing that the other person is harassed, or being reckless as to whether the other person is harassed, may be found guilty of criminal harassment. The Crown will also have to prove that the conduct of the accused actually caused the other person to fear for their safety or the safety of anyone known to them. Finally, the Crown will also have to prove that, considering all the circumstances of the case, the complainant’s fear was reasonable.
The maximum penalty for this offence is ten years imprisonment, where the Crown proceeded by indictment.
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