SENATE LAW AND PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE

 

STATEMENT TO

 

SENATE, No. 2469

 

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

 

DATED:JUNE 6, 2013

 

††††† The Senate Law and Public Safety Committee reports favorably Senate Bill No. 2469.

††††† This bill creates the crime of cyber-harassment.† The bill provides that a person commits the crime of cyber-harassment if, while online using any electronic device or using a social networking site and with the purpose to harass another, that person:† 1) threatens to injure or harm a person or that personís property; 2) sends or posts any lewd, indecent or obscene material to or about a person; or 3) threatens to commit a crime against a person or his or her property.

††††† The bill provides that cyber-harassment is a crime of the fourth degree, which is punishable by up to 18 months imprisonment, a fine of up to $10,000, or both.† However, if the offender is over age 21 at the time of the offense and impersonates a minor for the purpose of cyber-harassing a minor, cyber-harassment is a crime of the third degree.† A crime of the third degree is punishable by three to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $15,000, or both.

††††† If a minor under age 16 is adjudicated delinquent for cyber-harassment, the court may order as a condition of the sentence that the minor, accompanied by his or her parent or guardian, complete, in a satisfactory manner, one or both of the following: 1) a class or training program intended to reduce the tendency toward cyber-harassment behavior; or 2) a class or training program intended to bring awareness to the dangers associated with cyber-harassment.

††††† If a parent or guardian fails to accompany his or her child to the class or training program, the parent or guardian would be guilty of a disorderly persons offense and fined up to $25 for a first offense and up to $100 for each subsequent offense.