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Telephone Harassment

If you are charged with telephone harassment, you are alleged to have done one of the following:

  • Called or texted someone without identifying yourself in order to harass or abuse them
  • Did the same thing, but with your identity known, regardless if you did it or had someone do it for you
  • Talked about sex (described it, proposed it, etc.) to the person you called or texted, when they have asked you not to contact them either when it happened or in the past
  • Called or texted someone and knowingly made a serious threat of physical harm against them
  • Called or texted someone and knowingly threatened to damage property that they have a stake in, work in or are near
  • Called someone or a place when asked not to

Nearly every day in central Ohio people are charged with telephone harassment. Depending on the severity of the allegations, possession of criminal tools charges can range from a first degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to 180 days in jail to a fifth degree felony punishable by up to 12 months in prison.

If you are convicted of possession of telephone harassment, additional potential issues include:

  • Maintaining your current employment
  • Licensure issues in some professions
  • Difficulty getting a good job in the future
  • Difficulty and possible denial in immigration and naturalization proceedings
Simply put, if you are convicted of telephone harassment, it can potentially be on your criminal background for the rest of your life. No matter what the circumstances were in your case, you run the risk of being considered someone who at best bothers and at worst harasses others. Therefore, it is critical that you give your telephone harassment charge the level of importance it deserves.

The Columbus Criminal Defense team takes an aggressive and comprehensive approach when representing clients charged with telephone harassment. First and foremost, we will figure out what mistakes the police or detectives made during their investigation, whether the prosecuting witness is fabricating the charges any other legal issues that can be raised on your behalf.

We do this by requesting discovery from the prosecutor. The discovery will generally consist of police reports, additional investigative notes, witness statements and potentially video or audio. As our client, you will receive a copy of everything received from the prosecutor for your review

Based on the legal weaknesses in the State of Ohio’s case and any other mitigating factors, we will negotiate the best possible plea available with the prosecutor for you to consider in resolving your case.

If your case cannot be resolved satisfactorily with a plea, it would then proceed to a motion hearing (a hearing where the judge issues a ruling on an evidentiary issue) or a trial to the judge or jury, depending on the circumstances.

For nearly ten years, the Columbus Criminal Defense team has successfully represented clients charged with telephone harassment. That extensive previous experience will enable us to better help you.

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Are you in trouble? Contact us.

If you’ve been charged with telecommunications harassment, it’s important to know what you’re up against. If you have any questions left unanswered by this page, or if you need a competent, experienced criminal defense attorney to fight for you in court, please contact us at or via email at advice@columbuscriminalattorney.com.

This is a misdemeanor of the first degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A jail sentence of up to 180 days
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $1,000
This is a felony of the fifth degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A prison term of six months to one year
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $2,500

Threatening to damage property someone has a stake in, works in or is near

Value of the property:
This is a misdemeanor of the first degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A jail sentence of up to 180 days
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $1,000
This is a felony of the fifth degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A prison term of six months to one year
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $2,500
This is a felony of the fifth degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A prison term of six months to one year
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $2,500
This is a felony of the fourth degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A prison term of six to 18 months
    • In its place, your judge may sentence you to probation or other community control punishments
  • At most, a fine of $5,000
This is a felony of the third degree and carries the following penalties:
  • A prison term of nine months to three years
  • A fine of $5,000 to $10,000
Have a question we didn’t answer below? Feel free to email us or call us and we’ll help you out.

For telephone harassment to be considered stalking, there must be a threat of violence by the caller or the victim must have suffered mental distress. In this sense, mental distress means that they must have developed a mental illness that caused temporary but serious impairment—enough to warrant seeking a professional, even if they didn’t.

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Luftman, Heck & Associates LLP
580 E Rich St Fl 2
Columbus, OH 43215-5335
advice@columbuscriminalattorney.com

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FAX: (614) 413-2886