An Open Letter

Recently the United States Supreme Court reversed the 2017 conviction of a Colorado man who had been convicted of stalking a singer-songwriter. This decision redefined the meaning of a “true threat,” as it relates to cases of stalking through any form of communication. This decision poses significant challenges for survivors and may hinder their pursuit of justice. 

Stalking is recognized in Colorado as a felony, reflecting our understanding of the gravity of this crime, but our understanding of its long-lasting effects is still evolving. Stalking has transformed with the rise of technology and social media, making it easier for perpetrators to inflict harm without physically interacting with their victims. 

The new ruling places an additional burden on prosecutors, requiring them to prove that the speaker understood their statements’ threatening nature to meet the required burden for prosecution. This decision also adds further barriers for survivors seeking justice, may discourage victims from reaching out for the support they need, and exacerbate feelings of isolation and vulnerability. 

In light of this ruling and the trends we are witnessing in our communities, it is imperative that we strengthen partnerships and collaborate to protect and support survivors. We are deeply committed to this cause and stand ready to assist them and their families. We recognize that reaching out for help can be incredibly difficult, and we want survivors to know that they are not alone. 

If you or someone you know believes they are being stalked or harassed, we urge you to reach out to our organization for help. Our team can provide the guidance, support, and resources necessary to navigate these challenging situations. If you are experiencing an emergency or imminent danger, please do not hesitate to call 911. 

Lori Kempter 
Executive Director 
Crossroads Safehouse 
Get 24/7 Support at 1-888-541-SAFE (7233)