Posted on Jul 03, 2019
Steven Pierangeli, chief assistant prosecutor for Berrien County, returned to Rotary to the rest of his story.  In May his primary topic was Sexting. This time he focused on Cyberbulling crimes which have three laws with escalating penalties. The first is just bullying. Second is "stalking", which is un-consented contact. Physical threats also fall under this area.  And finally there are acts of terrorism which included threats of violence, especially toward schools - a 20 year felony.
   Steve also discussed the attorney general's efforts to protect kids from abuse.  The state offers an anonymous tip line via a new app called OK2Say.
His suggested starting questions are:
  • What are your favorite websites?  Have you seen objectionable pop  ups?
  • Who are texting with?
  • May I look at your feed?
  • How do you choose which people to accept as friends??
  • What personal info do you share?
He also recommends you maintain access to your children's web activities; no secret passwords or lockouts.
Some teens are sending nude selfies to their boyfriends, expecting it to be private.  But, it often happens that the photo or video will be quickly shared with a wide circle of associates.  This can be devastating.  It's a crime for someone to ask you for a inappropriate photo, punishable by up to 20 years and/or $100.000 in fines.
 
For more tips go to
 
   www.kidsmartz.org/ParentTips
 
and www.netsmartz.org.
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