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Florida Gator receiver Chris Rainey may be a star on the field, but the 21 year-old junior is a potential stalker off. According to Bleacher Report, Rainey has been arrested for felony stalking an on- again off-again girlfriend with threatening text messages, and showing up at her apartment.
Stalking is defined as a clear pattern of conduct in which the offender follows, harasses, or threatens another person. More than just a singular incident, stalking can take the form of any physical or cyber medium to make a victim feel unsafe. Here is how Chris Rainey falls into this definition: in addition to sending his ex-girlfriend expletive-laced text messages threatening violence, he also showed up at her house claiming that he would "bust open a window" if she did not let him in.
Sure the Florida Gators are a nationally ranked football team behind coach Urban Meyer, but the team has also been riddled with legal trouble. The Bleacher Report adds that there have been twenty nine incidents with Meyer's players facing either felony or misdemeanor charges. Make it thirty. With Chris Rainey arrested, the star will not only have internal consequences, but can also face some jail time in addition to heavy fines, and a restraining order.
Felony (or aggravated) stalking is a higher charge than misdemeanor stalking, and is charged against an individual when the stalking was in violation of a restraining order, pretrial release, or when there have been threats made against the victim or the victim's family. In the case of Chris Rainey, and all other stalking cases, the fact that the offender had a pre-existing relationship with the victim is irrelevant. The Florida Gators have not released a statement regarding the arrest or punishment of Rainey.