MySpace Suicide Prompts Legislation
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MySpace Suicide Prompts Legislation

Date: January 28, 2008
By: Amy Becker
State Capitol Bureau

Intro: In Missouri, state law makers have begun deliberating measures to make it a crime to do what one person did on the internet that drove one teenager to suicide. RunTime:1:02
OutCue: SOC

Cyber bullying legislation was prompted by the suicide of a High Schooler who thought she was talking to a 16 year old boy on MySpace.

Turns out she was actually talking to the mother of a neighbor, who eventually started threatening her, with other people joining in.  This verbal abuse resulted in the suicide of 13 year old Megan Meyer.

Her mother, Tina Meyer, testified in favor of the legislation.

Actuality:  TINA3.WAV
Run Time: 00:18
Description: Now if those laws were in place today, maybe it would have not saved my daughter's life, laws being in place are not going to save a child's life.  But certainly no family should have to go through sitting her on a daily basis and knowing that these people are still next door and knowing what they have done.

 

Police were unable to prosecute the adult since the type of harassment was not a crime under Missouri law.

The main concern over the harassment legislation was concerning the overly broad meanings of the language used.  Many are concerned of it being deemed unconstitutional.

Reporting from the Missouri state capitol, I'm Amy Becker, KMOX News.