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  • NJ A891
  • Upgrades harassment under certain circumstances; restricts cyberbullying offenders' access to the Internet.
In Committee
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/VetoedVeto Overridden
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill would restrict Internet access for offenders who are convicted of harassment of a minor or of stalking, when the offense is committed using an Internet-capable device. These offenses are commonly referred to as "cyberbullying." Section 1 would supplement Title 2C to provide that, in sentencing an offender found to have committed harassment in violation of subsection a. of N.J.S.2C:33-4 or stalking in violation of N.J.S.A.2C:12-10, the court may impose certain restrictions on Internet access. The bill would require the appropriate agency heads to promulgate guidelines regarding the specific Internet restrictions that may be imposed on an offender. Failure to comply with these restrictions would be a crime of the fourth degree. Section 2 of the bill would amend N.J.S.2C:33-4 to upgrade the crime of harassment under certain circumstances from a petty disorderly persons offense to a crime of the fourth degree. Under the bill, a person would be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree if that person makes a communication "in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm" and the victim is either under the age of eighteen or when the offender reasonably believes the victim to be under the age of eighteen. A crime of the fourth degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to 18 months, a fine of up to $10,000 or both. Sections 3 and 4 of the bill would amend N.J.S.A.2C:45-1, concerning probation, and N.J.S.A.30:4-123.59, concerning parole, to subject these "cyberbullying" offenders to Internet access restrictions as a condition of parole or probation. The restrictions imposed on Internet access would be as follows: prior court approval for the use of any Internet-capable device, except where the device is used in connection with employment or the search for employment; periodic, unannounced inspections of the offender's Internet-capable device by approved court and law enforcement officers, which would include copying and removal of data from the device for a more thorough inspection; the mandatory installation of equipment to monitor Internet usage on the device; and any other appropriate restrictions. The provisions of this bill would become effective immediately and apply to any person who commits an offense after the effective date of the bill or who is under probation or parole supervision at that time.
Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee  (on 1/27/2016)
Date Chamber Action Description
1/27/2016 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
None specified