Legislation Helps Protect Victims of Out-of-State Harassment

MADISON – A bill helping protect victims from cyberstalking and out-of-state  harassment passed the State Senate today on a voice vote. The bill now goes to Governor Walker for his signature.

“In today’s world of smart phones and social media, harassment and abuse takes all forms, and it doesn’t stop at the state line,” said the bill’s author, Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine). “This common-sense bill gives Wisconsin courts the much-needed power to issue restraining orders against out-of-state actors.”

Under current law, Wisconsin courts are unable to issue restraining orders protecting Wisconsin residents from harassment and stalking if the harasser resides out-of-state. A victim would have to travel to the state where the harasser lives to obtain relief. Assembly Bill 10 gives victims the ability to obtain restraining orders against abusers, no matter where the abuser lives.

“Victims of harassment should not have to second guess whether Wisconsin law can shield them from abuse,” Wanggaard continued. “This bill gives cyberstalking victims the peace of mind to know that Wisconsin law can protect them.”

Assembly Bill 10 is co-authored by Representative Amy Loudenbeck (R-Clinton), and passed the Assembly on a voice vote on February 12, 2015. The bill now goes to the Governor for his signature.