Unlawful contact with child or mentally ill person.
1. A person who, without lawful authority, willfully and maliciously engages in a course of conduct with a child who is under 16 years of age and who is at least 5 years younger than the person which would cause a reasonable child of like age to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated or harassed, and which actually causes the child to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated or harassed, commits the crime of unlawful contact with a child.
2. A person who, without lawful authority, willfully and maliciously engages in a course of conduct with a mentally ill person which would cause a mentally ill person of like mental condition to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated or harassed, and which actually causes the mentally ill person to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated or harassed, commits the crime of unlawful contact with a mentally ill person.
3. The penalties provided in this section do not preclude the victim from seeking any other legal remedy available.
4. Unless a greater penalty is provided by specific statute, a person who commits the crime of unlawful contact with a child or unlawful contact with a mentally ill person is guilty of:
(a) For the first offense, a gross misdemeanor.
(b) For the second and each subsequent offense, a category B felony and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 6 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $5,000.
5. As used in this section:
(a) “Course of conduct” means a pattern of conduct which consists of a series of acts over time that evidences a continuity of purpose directed at a specific person.
(b) “Mentally ill person” means a person who has any mental dysfunction leading to impaired ability to maintain himself and to function effectively in his life situation without external support.
(c) “Without lawful authority” includes acts that are initiated or continued without the victim’s consent. The term does not include acts that are otherwise protected or authorized by constitutional or statutory law, regulation or order of a court of competent jurisdiction, including, but not limited to:
(1) Picketing which occurs during a strike, work stoppage or any other labor dispute.
(2) The activities of a reporter, photographer, cameraman or other person while gathering information for communication to the public if that person is employed or engaged by or has contracted with a newspaper, periodical, press association or radio or television station and is acting solely within that professional capacity.
(3) The activities of a person that are carried out in the normal course of his lawful employment.
(4) Any activities carried out in the exercise of the constitutionally protected rights of freedom of speech and assembly.
Last modified: February 25, 2006