ID court rules man can face felony stalking charge

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The Idaho Court of Appeals has ruled that allegedly violating a Washington-issued no-contact order is sufficient to elevate charges against an Idaho man to felony first-degree stalking.

The judges on Friday reversed a 2nd District Court decision that had reduced charges against Paul Carey Hartzell to second-degree stalking, a misdemeanor.

According to court documents, a counselor who lived in Washington but worked in Idaho sought a no-contact order preventing Hartzell from contacting her for a year.

That's after he allegedly made unwanted advances, including at her home.

Initially charged with first-degree stalking, a judge reduced the charges against Hartzell.

That didn't sit well with prosecutors.

The Appeals Court agreed, ruling unanimously the district court judge erred by concluding the Washington state order couldn't elevate the Idaho charge to first-degree stalking.

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