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Maryland Senate to vote on ‘cyberbullying’ bill

March 1, 2018

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland Senate is about to vote on bill that calls for stronger punishments for people who cyberbully children.

The bill, known as “Grace’s Law 2.0,” seeks to close loopholes in a 2013 bill named after 15-year-old Grace McComas who killed herself in 2012 after being subjected to prolonged online bullying.

The Baltimore Sun reports that law required prosecutors to prove a pattern of bullying behavior, whereas the new bill sponsored Sen. Bobby Zirkin, D-Baltimore County, requires a “single significant act” of “intimidating, tormenting, harassing or physically harming a minor,” among other changes. But an attorney for the ACLU of Maryland, David Rocah, says the bill violates the First Amendment.

A final vote on the new bill is expected Thursday. If passed, it will move to the House Judiciary Committee.

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Information from: The Baltimore Sun, http://www.baltimoresun.com

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