1997-98 Academy Text Supplement

Chapter 21-2


The Model Anti-stalking Code

In 1993, as incidents of stalking began to increase, Congress directed the National Institute of Justice, within the U.S. Department of Justice, to develop a model anti-stalking code to provide a constitutional and enforceable legal framework for states to utilize in formulating their anti-stalking laws. A group of nationally recognized criminal justice and victims' rights experts developed a model anti-stalking code. By 1996, in the three years since the release of this significant report, 17 states had amended their stalking laws. (National Institute of Justice. (1996, April). Domestic Violence, Stalking and Anti-Stalking Legislation, Annual Report to Congress under the Violence Against Women Act, NCJ-160943. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice.)

The Model Code encouraged legislators to:

The Interstate Anti-Stalking Punishment and Prevention Act of 1996

The Interstate Anti-Stalking Punishment and Prevention Act was enacted by Congress in September of 1996. The law was incorporated as an amendment to the Defense Authorization bill, H.R. 3610. The new law was designed to improve the anti-stalking provisions passed as part of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (Crime Bill) and to create a uniform federal law to protect stalking victims when they travel across a state line and/or on federal property, including military bases and Indian reservations. The Act makes it a felony to cross a state line to stalk someone in violation of a restraining order.

According to the National Victim Center, as stated in its national publication the Victim Policy Pipeline:

New Research on Stalking from the National Institute of Justice

and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

In April of 1998 the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a study on the extent of stalking nationwide. To better understand the extent of stalking and the context in which violence related to stalking occurs, the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) collaborated in a comprehensive survey of violence against women. Conducted by the Center for Policy Research, the National Violence Against Women Survey collected data from 8,000 women and 8,000 men 18 years of age or older from November 1995 through May 1996.

The following data were first released by NIJ in November of 1997 in a Bulletin entitled The Crime of Stalking: How Big is the Problem? A more comprehensive overview of the research findings were released in a April 1998 Research in Brief report entitled Stalking in America, modeled after the landmark 1992 Rape in America report developed by the Medical University of South Carolina and the National Victim Center.

Recommendations to address the crime of stalking included in the Report are the following:

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