Town of Nahant


Dealing with Harassing and Obscene Phone Calls

Making harassing and obscene telephone calls is a misdemeanor in Massachusetts, provided:

  • The Caller Has Made At Least Three Calls
  • The Caller Has Used Obscene Language or His or Her Sole Purpose Was To Harass The Victim

It is rare that the police are able to charge someone with harassing phone calls, but we are still often able to solve the problem by simply calling the offender and telling him or her to knock it off.

You can prevent many harassing phone calls by changing your telephone number to an unlisted number, and then only giving out your number to people that you know well.

If you receive harassing or obscene telephone calls that you would like the police to investigate:

1. After you receive the call, hang up, then lift the receiver, listen for a dial tone, and dial*57 (rotary phones dial 1157). You will receive an announcement that the call was traced.

2. Call Verizon's Unlawful Call Center (UCC) at 800-518-5507 to open a case. They will provide you with further instructions, but they will not provide you with the caller's phone number.

3. Call the Nahant Police Department at 781-581-1212 or visit us at the Station on 98 Nahant Road to virtual a police report.

4. Continue dialing *57 after each harassing or unwanted call. Once Verizon has successfully traced three phone calls, they will notify you. Call the Nahant Police Department with the information provided by the UCC. We will obtain the caller's information from the UCC.

5. Once the we have obtained the information from the UCC, we will review it with you to determine if you would like to pursue formal charges, handle it through a police warning, or handle it yourself.


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