WINCHESTER, VA- It doesn't matter the location or time of day, anyone can become a victim of stalking.
"The dangers are with an individual who becomes obsessed with someone else," says the KC Bohrer an Investigator with the Frederick County Sheriff's Office. "It doesn't discontinue, oftentimes they intimidate them. They create this atmosphere of fear where they feel like they can't go anywhere or do anything. Sometimes it escalates to the point where there is also violence and assaults."
Local police departments and the Laurel Center, a shelter for abused women, are working to equip victims with stalking prevention kits to be better prepared when danger is lurking.
"We are hoping that we can prevent some of the incidences by stopping them sooner," says Bohrer. "If they don't stop, we're hoping that we can gain the evidence or the information needed to prosecute the parties and make a safer society for the victims."
Although the agencies will not disclose what's in the safety kits, they say there are informational resources and evidence collection materials like the latex gloves and other resources for victims to protect themselves. They do concede, there are no weapons involved.
The Laurel Center handled 30 stalking cases in 2012 and says there were more that went unreported or sent to other police departments.
"Stalking is a bit hard to prove what's really going on," Melissa Nilsen with the Laurel Center. "That's when you really have to get into documenting everything. Saving text messages. voicemail's, gifts that you get. Everything just save everything."
Police say most victims are women, but anyone can be targeted.
"Any time of the day. Any time of the year. It could be any one of us could become a victim," says Nilsen. "There really is no discrimination."
They hope to bring greater awareness and put an end to the fear of being followed.
The Frederick County deputies say the idea for stalking prevention kits in Virginia came from a local West Virginia police station. Other departments in Maryland have similar prevention kits.