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H.B. 493 Enrolled
7 LONG TITLE
8 General Description:
9 The bill modifies the Criminal Code regarding the elements and penalties for the offense
10 of stalking.
11 Highlighted Provisions:
12 This bill:
13 . amends the definition of "course of conduct" to include contacting a victim by any
14 means, acting through third parties, and sending or delivering items to the victim;
15 . includes as an element a victim's fear for the victim's own safety or the safety of third
17 . defines "emotional distress";
18 . includes stalking by electronic communication as an offense;
19 . expands the reference to other parties whom the victim may fear for so the reference
20 includes any third party, rather than only immediate family; and
21 . provides that the defendant may not claim as a defense that the victim did not give
22 the defendant actual notice that the course of conduct was unwanted by the victim.
23 Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
25 Other Special Clauses:
27 Utah Code Sections Affected:
29 76-3-203.5, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2007, Chapters 229 and 339
30 76-5-106.5, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2001, Chapter 276
32 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
33 Section 1. Section 76-3-203.5 is amended to read:
34 76-3-203.5. Habitual violent offender -- Definition -- Procedure -- Penalty.
35 (1) As used in this section:
36 (a) "Felony" means any violation of a criminal statute of the state, any other state, the
37 United States, or any district, possession, or territory of the United States for which the
38 maximum punishment the offender may be subjected to exceeds one year in prison.
39 (b) "Habitual violent offender" means a person convicted within the state of any violent
40 felony and who on at least two previous occasions has been convicted of a violent felony and
41 committed to either prison in Utah or an equivalent correctional institution of another state or of
42 the United States either at initial sentencing or after revocation of probation.
43 (c) (i) "Violent felony" means any of the following offenses, or any attempt, solicitation,
44 or conspiracy to commit any of these offenses punishable as a felony:
45 (A) aggravated arson, arson, knowingly causing a catastrophe, and criminal mischief,
46 Title 76, Chapter 6, Part 1, Property Destruction;
47 (B) assault by prisoner, Section 76-5-102.5 ;
48 (C) disarming a police officer, Section 76-5-102.8 ;
49 (D) aggravated assault, Section 76-5-103 ;
50 (E) aggravated assault by prisoner, Section 76-5-103.5 ;
51 (F) mayhem, Section 76-5-105 ;
52 (G) stalking, [
53 (H) terroristic threat, Section 76-5-107 ;
54 (I) child abuse, Subsections 76-5-109 (2)(a) and (b);
55 (J) commission of domestic violence in the presence of a child, Section 76-5-109.1 ;
56 (K) abuse or neglect of disabled child, Section 76-5-110 ;
57 (L) abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a vulnerable adult, Section 76-5-111 ;
58 (M) endangerment of child or elder adult, Section 76-5-112.5 ;
59 (N) criminal homicide offenses under Title 76, Chapter 5, Part 2, Criminal Homicide;
60 (O) kidnapping, child kidnapping, and aggravated kidnapping under Title 76, Chapter 5,
61 Part 3, Kidnapping;
62 (P) rape, Section 76-5-402 ;
63 (Q) rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.1 ;
64 (R) object rape, Section 76-5-402.2 ;
65 (S) object rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.3 ;
66 (T) forcible sodomy, Section 76-5-403 ;
67 (U) sodomy on a child, Section 76-5-403.1 ;
68 (V) forcible sexual abuse, Section 76-5-404 ;
69 (W) aggravated sexual abuse of a child and sexual abuse of a child, Section 76-5-404.1 ;
70 (X) aggravated sexual assault, Section 76-5-405 ;
71 (Y) sexual exploitation of a minor, Section 76-5a-3 ;
72 (Z) aggravated burglary and burglary of a dwelling under Title 76, Chapter 6, Part 2,
73 Burglary and Criminal Trespass;
74 (AA) aggravated robbery and robbery under Title 76, Chapter 6, Part 3, Robbery;
75 (BB) theft by extortion under Subsection 76-6-406 (2)(a) or (b);
76 (CC) tampering with a witness under Subsection 76-8-508 (1);
77 (DD) retaliation against a witness, victim, or informant under Section 76-8-508.3 ;
78 (EE) tampering with a juror under Subsection 76-8-508.5 (2)(c);
79 (FF) extortion to dismiss a criminal proceeding under Section 76-8-509 if by any threat
80 or by use of force theft by extortion has been committed pursuant to Subsections
81 76-6-406 (2)(a), (b), and (i);
82 (GG) possession, use, or removal of explosive, chemical, or incendiary devices under
83 Subsections 76-10-306 (3) through (6);
84 (HH) unlawful delivery of explosive, chemical, or incendiary devices under Section
85 76-10-307 ;
86 (II) purchase or possession of a dangerous weapon or handgun by a restricted person
87 under Section 76-10-503 ;
88 (JJ) unlawful discharge of a firearm under Section 76-10-508 ;
89 (KK) aggravated exploitation of prostitution under Subsection 76-10-1306 (1)(a);
90 (LL) bus hijacking under Section 76-10-1504 ; and
91 (MM) discharging firearms and hurling missiles under Section 76-10-1505 ; or
92 (ii) any felony violation of a criminal statute of any other state, the United States, or any
93 district, possession, or territory of the United States which would constitute a violent felony as
94 defined in this Subsection (1) if committed in this state.
95 (2) If a person is convicted in this state of a violent felony by plea or by verdict and the
96 trier of fact determines beyond a reasonable doubt that the person is a habitual violent offender
97 under this section, the penalty for a:
98 (a) third degree felony is as if the conviction were for a first degree felony;
99 (b) second degree felony is as if the conviction were for a first degree felony; or
100 (c) first degree felony remains the penalty for a first degree penalty except:
101 (i) the convicted person is not eligible for probation; and
102 (ii) the Board of Pardons and Parole shall consider that the convicted person is a
103 habitual violent offender as an aggravating factor in determining the length of incarceration.
104 (3) (a) The prosecuting attorney, or grand jury if an indictment is returned, shall provide
105 notice in the information or indictment that the defendant is subject to punishment as a habitual
106 violent offender under this section. Notice shall include the case number, court, and date of
107 conviction or commitment of any case relied upon by the prosecution.
108 (b) (i) The defendant shall serve notice in writing upon the prosecutor if the defendant
109 intends to deny that:
110 (A) the defendant is the person who was convicted or committed;
111 (B) the defendant was represented by counsel or had waived counsel; or
112 (C) the defendant's plea was understandingly or voluntarily entered.
113 (ii) The notice of denial shall be served not later than five days prior to trial and shall
114 state in detail the defendant's contention regarding the previous conviction and commitment.
115 (4) (a) If the defendant enters a denial under Subsection (3)(b) and if the case is tried to
116 a jury, the jury may not be told until after it returns its verdict on the underlying felony charge,
117 of the:
118 (i) defendant's previous convictions for violent felonies, except as otherwise provided in
119 the Utah Rules of Evidence; or
120 (ii) allegation against the defendant of being a habitual violent offender.
121 (b) If the jury's verdict is guilty, the defendant shall be tried regarding the allegation of
122 being an habitual violent offender by the same jury, if practicable, unless the defendant waives
123 the jury, in which case the allegation shall be tried immediately to the court.
124 (c) (i) Prior to or at the time of sentencing the trier of fact shall determine if this section
126 (ii) The trier of fact shall consider any evidence presented at trial and the prosecution
127 and the defendant shall be afforded an opportunity to present any necessary additional evidence.
128 (iii) Prior to sentencing under this section, the trier of fact shall determine whether this
129 section is applicable beyond a reasonable doubt.
130 (d) If any previous conviction and commitment is based upon a plea of guilty or no
131 contest, there is a rebuttable presumption that the conviction and commitment were regular and
132 lawful in all respects if the conviction and commitment occurred after January 1, 1970. If the
133 conviction and commitment occurred prior to January 1, 1970, the burden is on the prosecution
134 to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant was then represented by
135 counsel or had lawfully waived [
136 defendant's plea was understandingly and voluntarily entered.
137 (e) If the trier of fact finds this section applicable, the court shall enter that specific
138 finding on the record and shall indicate in the order of judgment and commitment that the
139 defendant has been found by the trier of fact to be a habitual violent offender and is sentenced
140 under this section.
141 (5) (a) The sentencing enhancement provisions of Section 76-3-407 supersede the
142 provisions of this section.
143 (b) Notwithstanding Subsection (5)(a), the "violent felony" offense defined in
144 Subsection (1)(c) shall include any felony sexual offense violation of Title 76, Chapter 5, Part 4,
145 Sexual Offenses, to determine if the convicted person is a habitual violent offender.
146 (6) The sentencing enhancement described in this section does not apply if:
147 (a) the offense for which the person is being sentenced is:
148 (i) a grievous sexual offense;
149 (ii) child kidnapping, Section 76-5-301.1 ;
150 (iii) aggravated kidnapping, Section 76-5-302 ; or
151 (iv) forcible sexual abuse, Section 76-5-404 ; and
152 (b) applying the sentencing enhancement provided for in this section would result in a
153 lower maximum penalty than the penalty provided for under the section that describes the
154 offense for which the person is being sentenced.
155 Section 2. Section 76-5-106.5 is amended to read:
156 76-5-106.5. Stalking -- Definitions -- Injunction -- Penalties.
157 (1) As used in this section:
158 (a) "Conviction" means:
159 (i) a verdict or conviction;
160 (ii) a plea of guilty or guilty and mentally ill;
161 (iii) a plea of no contest; or
162 (iv) the acceptance by the court of a plea in abeyance.
166 or toward a specific person, including:
167 (i) acts in which the actor follows, monitors, observes, photographs, surveils, threatens,
168 or communicates to or about a person, or interferes with a person's property:
169 (A) directly, indirectly, or through any third party; and
170 (B) by any action, method, device, or means; or
171 (ii) when the actor engages in any of the following acts or causes someone else to
172 engage in any of these acts:
173 (A) approaches or confronts a person;
174 (B) appears at the person's workplace or contacts the person's employer or coworkers;
175 (C) appears at a person's residence or contacts a person's neighbors, or enters property
176 owned, leased, or occupied by a person;
177 (D) sends material by any means to the person or for the purpose of obtaining or
178 disseminating information about or communicating with the person to a member of the person's
179 family or household, employer, coworker, friend, or associate of the person;
180 (E) places an object on or delivers an object to property owned, leased, or occupied by
181 a person, or to the person's place of employment with the intent that the object be delivered to
182 the person; or
183 (F) uses a computer, the Internet, text messaging, or any other electronic means to
184 commit an act that is a part of the course of conduct.
186 who regularly resides in the household or who regularly resided in the household within the
187 prior six months.
189 (d) "Emotional distress" means significant mental or psychological suffering, whether or
190 not medical or other professional treatment or counseling is required.
191 (e) "Reasonable person" means a reasonable person in the victim's circumstances.
192 (f) "Stalking" means an offense as described in Subsection (2) or (3).
193 (g) "Text messaging" means a communication in the form of electronic text or one or
194 more electronic images sent by the actor from a telephone or computer to another person's
195 telephone or computer by addressing the communication to the recipient's telephone number.
196 (2) A person is guilty of stalking who[
197 course of conduct directed at a specific person [
198 of conduct would cause a reasonable person:
200 (a) to fear for the person's own safety or the safety of a third person; or
213 (3) A person is [
214 (a) a stalking injunction issued pursuant to Title 77, Chapter 3a, Stalking Injunctions[
215 or [
216 (b) a permanent criminal stalking injunction issued pursuant to this section.
217 (4) In any prosecution under this section, it is not a defense that the actor:
218 (a) was not given actual notice that the course of conduct was unwanted; or
219 (b) did not intend to cause the victim fear or other emotional distress.
220 (5) An offense of stalking may be prosecuted under this section in any jurisdiction
221 where one or more of the acts that is part of the course of conduct was initiated or caused an
222 effect on the victim.
224 (a) upon the offender's first violation of Subsection (2); or
225 (b) if the offender violated a stalking injunction issued pursuant to Title 77, Chapter 3a,
226 Stalking Injunctions.
228 (a) has been previously convicted of an offense of stalking;
229 (b) has been previously convicted in another jurisdiction of an offense that is
230 substantially similar to the offense of stalking;
231 (c) has been previously convicted of any felony offense in Utah or of any crime in
232 another jurisdiction which if committed in Utah would be a felony, in which the victim of the
233 stalking offense or a member of the victim's immediate family was also a victim of the previous
234 felony offense; [
235 (d) violated a permanent criminal stalking injunction issued pursuant to Subsection
237 (e) has been or is at the time of the offense a cohabitant, as defined in Section
238 78B-7-102 , of the victim.
240 (a) used a dangerous weapon as defined in Section 76-1-601 or used other means or
241 force likely to produce death or serious bodily injury, in the commission of the crime of
243 (b) has been previously convicted two or more times of the offense of stalking;
244 (c) has been convicted two or more times in another jurisdiction or jurisdictions of
245 offenses that are substantially similar to the offense of stalking;
246 (d) has been convicted two or more times, in any combination, of offenses under
247 Subsection [
248 (e) has been previously convicted two or more times of felony offenses in Utah or of
249 crimes in another jurisdiction or jurisdictions which, if committed in Utah, would be felonies, in
250 which the victim of the stalking was also a victim of the previous felony offenses[
251 (f) has been previously convicted of an offense under Subsection (7)(d), (e), or (f).
253 abeyance for a period of time [
254 stalking injunction limiting the contact [
256 hearing unless the defendant requests a hearing at the time of the [
258 The court shall give the defendant notice of [
260 the time of the [
265 copy of the judgment and conviction or a certified copy of the court's order holding the plea in
266 abeyance must be filed by the victim in the district court as an application and request for a
267 hearing for a permanent criminal stalking injunction.
270 (i) restraining the defendant from entering the residence, property, school, or place of
271 employment of the victim; and
272 (ii) requiring the defendant to stay away from the victim and members of the victim's
273 immediate family or household and to stay away from any specified place that is named in the
274 order and is frequented regularly by the victim; and
276 victim, including an order forbidding the defendant from personally or through an agent
277 initiating any communication likely to cause annoyance or alarm to the victim, including
278 personal, written, or telephone contact with or regarding the victim, with the victim's
279 employers, employees, [
280 communication would be likely to cause annoyance or alarm to the victim.
282 upon application of the victim to the court which granted the [
284 section shall be sent by the court to the statewide warrants network or similar system.
289 (b) Violations may be enforced in a civil action initiated by the stalking victim, a
290 criminal action initiated by a prosecuting attorney, or both.
292 criminal information for stalking based on the same act which is the basis for the violation of the
293 stalking injunction issued pursuant to Title 77, Chapter 3a, Stalking Injunctions, or a permanent
294 criminal stalking injunction.
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