What Are the Penalties for Harassment in South Carolina?

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Contrary to popular belief, harassment can occur in various scenarios, not exclusively in the workplace setting. And with this, the state of South Carolina recognizes different harassment charges and associated penalties. Whether you are being accused of harassment or you have been made a victim, read on to discover the different penalties for the different types of harassment and how a seasoned Chesterfield criminal defense lawyer at The Cockrell Law Firm, P.C., can guide you through your legal situation.

What are the different types of harassment in the state of South Carolina?

The common types of harassment seen in the state of South Carolina are harassment in the first degree, harassment in the second degree, and stalking.

For one, state law considers harassment in the first degree to be a pattern of intentional and unreasonable intrusion into another person’s privacy, which causes physical, emotional, and/or mental suffering. Notably, harassment in the second degree holds a similar definition. The main difference, however, is that first-degree harassment tends to be more serious, as it may involve physical injury or fear of physical injury. Second-degree harassment, on the other hand, tends to involve less serious actions that cause annoyance or alarm.

Then, stalking is considered to be an unwanted pursuit against another person. More specifically, it is seen as a pattern of words or actions to cause another person to fear death, assault, serious bodily injury, sexual contact, kidnapping, property damage, or otherwise fear of being placed in a position of severe danger.

What are the different penalties for the different types of harassment?

As already mentioned, with the different types of harassment come different penalties. They read as follows:

  • First-degree harassment is a misdemeanor:
    • Imprisonment for up to three years.
    • A fine of up to $1,000.
  • Second-degree harassment is a misdemeanor:
    • Imprisonment for up to 30 days.
    • A fine of up to $200.
  • Stalking is a felony:
    • Imprisonment of up to five years.
    • A fine of up to $5,000.

Importantly, if any of the above crimes are committed while under a restraining order or as a second offense within 10 years, then these consequences will be heightened.

Nonetheless, if you have been accused of harassment and require legal representation, you should not hesitate in retaining the services of one of the competent South Carolina lawyers today. We will build a comprehensive strategy and work to reduce or altogether eliminate the penalties placed against you. Pick up the phone and give us a call today.


For competent and trustworthy legal counsel involving criminal law, personal injury law, divorce & separation, and family law, contact The Cockrell Law Firm, P.C. today to schedule your free initial consultation.