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Harassment is one of the broadest charges an individual can face in Colorado, and it’s often used against someone when the police or the district attorney can’t find other criminal charges to pursue.

While many conflicts that result in harassment charges are minor, associated misdemeanor or felony convictions can have life-changing consequences. The Denver criminal defense lawyers at Wolf Law have extensive experience in harassment cases, and we take harassment charges very seriously—even if they stem from a seemingly trivial event.

If you’re facing harassment charges in Colorado, call Wolf Law at 720-479-8574 or contact us online for a free consultation.

How Does Colorado Define Harassment?

infograph about harassment charges in ColoradoColorado’s revised statute defines harassment in broad strokes, but it does specify that the perpetrator’s intent must be to harass, annoy or alarm another person.

Once intent is established, harassment may apply to:

  • Hitting, shoving, kicking, or other physical contact
  • Obscene language or gestures directed at another in a public place
  • Following another in a public place
  • Repeated phone calls with no intention of conversation
  • Engaging communication at inconvenient hours that interferes with the use and expected privacy of a person’s residence or private property
  • Persistent insults, taunts, challenges, or coarse language that is likely to provoke a violent or disorderly response

Colorado’s harassment statute defines certain terms in more detail. For example, “obscene” is defined as “a patently offensive description of ultimate sexual acts or solicitation to commit ultimate sexual acts…” Whether or not the acts are real or simulated, and regardless of whether the stated acts come to fruition is irrelevant for harassment charges to be filed.

Digital Harassment: Kiana Arellano’s law

In 2015, Colorado state legislators approved House Bill 1072, also known as Kiana Arellano’s Law. The law is named after a Highlands Ranch teen who was the victim of frequent cyberbullying attacks. She attempted suicide and survived, but was left permanently disabled.

Kiana Arellano’s Law was added to the harassment statute because lawmakers agreed that cyberbullying could transform into criminal harassment. The law prohibits obscene language, or language intended to harass or threaten bodily injury or property damage toward another person, anonymously or otherwise, by:

  • Telephone
  • Data network
  • Text or instant message
  • Computer or computer network
  • Other interactive electronic medium (such as social media)

Colorado Harassment Penalties

infograph representation of harassment penalties in ColoradoHarassment alone is charged as a class 3 misdemeanor, punishable by fines up to $750 and six months in county jail.

Harassment, however, becomes a class 1 misdemeanor if the perpetrator “commits harassment … with the intent to intimidate or harass another person because of that person’s actual or perceived race, color, religion, ancestry, or national origin.” Class 1 misdemeanors are punishable by up to 18 months in jail and a maximum fine of $5,000.

Although harassment itself is a misdemeanor, it can escalate to potential felony charges. Harassment and stalking, for example, share similarities as criminal acts, but the penalties for stalking are more severe. A first-time stalking charge is a class 5 felony that is punishable by up to three years in jail and a maximum fine of $100,000.

Legal Defense for Harassment Charges

There are several legitimate defenses available to combat criminal harassment based on the circumstances of the charges. Defenses in Colorado harassment cases include but are not limited to:

  • The accused did not make the communication as reported
  • The accused made no physical contact with the alleged victim
  • The accused did to intend to annoy, harm, or alarm anyone
  • The communication in question was not obscene or offensive
  • The described harassment was not motivated by race, religion, ancestry, or national origin
  • The communication was constitutionally protected (i.e., political protest, customer complaint, etc.)

Colorado’s harassment statute is specific in that it is “not intended to infringe upon any right guaranteed to any person by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution or to prevent the expression of any religious, political, or philosophical views.”

If you’ve been charged with harassment in Colorado, you need a criminal defense attorney who understands the intricacies of the state’s harassment law. Please call Wolf Law at 720-479-8574 or contact us online to arrange your free consultation.

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After recently facing two relatively serious traffic violations, Mr. Wolf was able to obtain an outcome for my case that far exceeded my expectations. From the initial consultation onward, Jeff was extremely professional, punctual, and confident. Jeff clearly defined our objectives and provided me with some serious peace of mind. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Mr. Wolf’s services to any family member or friend in need and couldn’t be more pleased with his representation!

— Michael

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At first I was unsure, working with attorneys can be so stressful and difficult to gauge if they can help you effectively. I used this firm for two different cases and I was glad that they were reasonable and didn’t tell me falsehoods. Straight to the point and don’t promise you rainbows and butterflies. That is what you want: a straight up lawyer who doesn’t give you nonsense. Be patient, they will help you and you can feel like they forgot; but that’s just how this stuff goes. Court cases take time and they have many clients, its nothing personal. When we went to court everything was laid out for me to understand and I think they prepared for each task. Each case was handled professionally and they answered all my questions. Thank you, Cassandra and Colleen

— Anonymous

Jeff is a Powerhouse in the Courtroom

Jeff is truly an expert in his field. He is extremely knowledgeable and bright and it was clear throughout his management of my case that he is highly respected. He was very supportive of my desire to see my case through to trial, he was always empathetic, and he took the time to understand my personal and professional situation. He was determined to get me the best outcome with the least impact to my personal and professional life and he succeeded. We were dealing with a refusal and I have little doubt that I would not have had the same results with another attorney. Jeff is a powerhouse in the courtroom! I am beyond appreciative and would strongly recommend anyone facing challenging legal issues to seek out Jeff’s expertise.

— Jana S.

Amazing Lawyer

If you’re looking for an amazing lawyer I would highly recommend Jeff Wolf and Wolf Law in general Jeff helped me every step of the way, kept me well informed about what was going on with my case, and was very responsive to every question I had and is genuinely a good dude. I appreciated all of his help and the way he handled my case. I would highly recommend him to anyone who needs a good lawyer cause he’s definitely the way to go thank you again Jeff!

— Jordan B

Services with Jeff

Jeff accepted a traffic violation case with not a ton of time to prepare. He provided clear instructions on how to proceed with the initial hearing in order for this individual to receive an extension and time to gain attorney representation. From there, he continued take the extra steps necessary to not only communicate effectively and clearly but also provide a level of advocacy that was necessary for this vulnerable individual! Thanks Jeff — Your work, patience and understanding is greatly appreciated!

— Nicole Young

My Heart Was Ripped Out, Wolf Law Showed Compassion

In early March, my heart was seemingly ripped out. I was driving into town with my two children, 5 and 2, in extremely inclimate weather conditions when my car hit a patch of ice and I lost control of my vehicle. It was a horrific accident and I was the only survivor in my vehicle. As if this wasn’t the worst thing that could have ever happened, I was charged with careless driving resulting in death, two counts. I was referred to Mr. Wolf by four separate law offices, as well as the BAR Association. The District Attorney’s office attempted to raise my charges to much more serious felony charges that could have carried very harsh sentences. Mr. Wolf was able to maintain the original charges and speak compassion and mercy to the the judge, leaving me facing only community service and a short probation with minimal associated probation costs. I would recommend his services to anybody and everybody. Not only is he incredibly knowledgeable, but he is passionate about his work, while showing the utmost compassion and respect for his clients’ situation.

— Jamie

I Was Very Well Represented by Jeff

Regarding a DV assault charge, Jeff was able to have the judge do something he stated he’d never done in any similar case: he deferred my sentence, reduced probation, reduced the amount of classes I would have to take from being many weeks on end to 2 days, and instead of requiring a no-contact order (which would have left me homeless and unable to speak to my partner via any means), he placed me on a no-contact order with alcohol… That alone was the best thing I could hear.

Without going into details of my case, this was the best possible outcome I could have been given, and I’m so happy that I was recommended to him by a fellow law professional that went to school with Jeff. I will be using him again when the time comes to put this case behind me for good, and would recommend him to anyone who needs expert defense, and wants someone to explain your case in simple, yet professional terms. I felt very well taken care of. Thank you again, Jeff!

— Laurie A.

Colleen Kelley, Esq.

Wolf Law Firm, LLC was not recommend to me by anyone, but as it turned out, was the best choice I could have made!

While searching for a lawyer for my two cases, a DUI and a trespassing felony, an understatement to say how scared I was! Wolf Law Firm caught my eye and, truthfully, it was because their firm provided a free consultation, which is invaluable in and of itself. Colleen Kelley is the attorney that picked-up the phone that day. After talking with her, I made the choice to hire her as my attorney.

We got off to a rocky start, mainly because of my inability to realize just how severe my situation was. Then, one day, Colleen just laid it on the line for me, my obvious unwillingness to face what was happening and the fact I wasn’t facing my drinking issues. It was a conversation that she was bold enough to have with me. Thanking her a million times over isn’t enough for the fortitude she had that day, not only as my attorney, but as a person genuinely concerned.

OUR outcome was more than phenomenal thanks to her diligence! I am, and will always remain, emotionally indebted to Colleen for her courage, kindness and overall, being an awesome attorney.

The day I came across Wolf Law Firm was the day, as it turned out, my life has a new beginning.

— Shelly O'Hayre

Hit and Run Charges

I had multiple charges stacked against me by the CSP office for a questionable “hit and run” in my office parking lot. Jeff reviewed the video evidence and was able to get the charges reduced from 26 points against my driver’s license down to 4. He was also able to get the fines reduced to the minimum amount! Jeff was extremely knowledgeable and helped ease my fears each time we spoke and explained the whole process and what to expect along the way. Thank you, Jeff!

— Jim M.

DUI Charge Reduced to Reckless Driving

I approached Mr. Wolf due to a first-time DUI charge. He was extremely knowledgeable and professional throughout every step of the legal process. As a result of his diligence in court, the charges against me were reduced to reckless driving. I would recommend Mr. Wolf’s services to my friends and family.

— Gina