Many people make the mistake of assuming that harassment accusations are benign. If you are facing them, you might believe that their impact will be minimal, so long as you apologize to your accuser.
In Colorado, their allegations could lead to charges and serious penalties. By understanding the potential consequences, you can better prepare for them and establish a strong defense.
How does Colorado define harassment?
Harassment encompasses a wide variety of behaviors under Colorado law. Your actions may qualify as harassment if you allegedly did any of the following:
- Made obscene comments to or gestures toward another person
- Made unwanted physical contact with another person
- Followed another person
- Provoked another person through taunts, challenges or insults
- Contacted another person in a manner that invaded their privacy
What are the penalties for harassment in Colorado?
In Colorado, harassment may lead to Class 3 misdemeanor charges. If your charges end in conviction, you could spend up to six months in prison. You may also have to pay a fine of up to $750.
If you are alleged to have harassed someone based on their background, skin color, religion or ability, it is a Class 1 misdemeanor charge. If convicted, you could spend up to 18 months in prison, and you may have to pay a fine of up to $5,000. If you have or had an intimate relationship with your accuser, your actions may qualify as domestic violence.
Defending against harassment charges
Under Colorado law, any act of harassment must be intentional for your charges to lead to a conviction. If you did not mean to harass your accuser, or if you believe their accusations are false, you must gather the evidence necessary to support your position.