Threats & Intimidation

If you intimidate someone, you deliberately make them frightened enough to do what you want them to do (verb). In other words, to make timid or frightened; scare. To discourage, restrain, or silence illegally or unscrupulously, as by threats or blackmail. In American English, to make timid; make afraid; daunt … to force or deter with threats or violence; cow.

In short … to intimidate someone means to frighten them, sometimes as a deliberate way of making them do something. Or, not do something maybe. Intimidation or harassment may also constitute a criminal offence under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. That Act also provides for a civil injunction to prevent harassment, breach of which is a criminal offence.

The intensity and frequency of incidents, combined with the proximity of victim and perpetrator, not only makes harassment and intimidation extremely distressing, it also makes it difficult for recipients of this kind of abuse from taking a stand and speaking out against the behaviour.

As for a threat … a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done.

According to Avon and Somerset Police, a threat is a statement of an intention to cause pain, injury, damage or other hostile action. The types of threat include verbal, written or psychological harassment, threats of a sexual nature, threats to kill or racial or religious threats known as hate crime.

If you are receiving threats that you feel put you in immediate danger or at risk, you should call 999 straight away. If you are not immediate danger, you can report being threatened on the phone by calling 101.

Examples of Intimidation … making you afraid by using looks, actions or gestures … smashing things … destroying property … displaying weapons. Examples of Threats … making and/or carrying out threats to hurt you … threatening to leave or commit suicide … making you do illegal things.