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Montgomery County Woman Charged with Cyber-Harassment

The use of online social media sites to harass or intimidate has become a national issue after a number of suicides and incidents stemming from online harassment have been prosecuted in criminal courts. In Montgomery County, a woman who allegedly unleashed a tirade of angry posts on Twitter has been charged with stalking and harassment.

According to a Montgomerynews.com report, the criminal complaint alleges that the woman used Twitter to send "dozens of derogatory and harassing messages" against Montgomery County Judge Wendy Demchick-Alloy, an assistant public defender, as well as officials for the Office of Children and Youth.

The messages allegedly stem from the woman's displeasure with a 2007 family court decision that left her without custody of her children. After the children were removed to the county Office of Children and Youth and placed in foster care, the woman allegedly began passing out flyers with derogatory information about the judge. She is also accused of sending out posts with the judge's home address and telephone number. One alleged tweet exclaims: "somebody should pay all these people a visit bust out windows and cut tires!"

Cyber-stalking (and cyber-bulling) threats are taken seriously by law enforcement agencies. They are treated much the same way as real world incidents, where a person physically harasses or stalks someone. As such, these crimes can be classified as first degree misdemeanors, and in some cases third degree felonies.

Because of this, it is important that you understand your rights and options if you are charged (or under investigation) for these crimes. An experienced criminal defense attorney can advise you.

Source: MontgomeryNews.com, "Woman accused of harassing, stalking county judge, other officials" October 16, 2012

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