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Bullying is the systematic infliction of physical hurt or psychological distress. "Cyberbullying" is simply the use of information technology to do the same thing and it’s a first degree misdemeanor punishable by 12 months in the county jail, and a $1,000.00 fine for each alleged act. The Lakeland Police Department takes cyberstalking allegations seriously and we encourage anyone who feels they have been a victim of cyberstalking to contact us and file a report.

Cyberbullying has emerged as the most prevalent and persistent online threat as technology is becoming a dependable form of communication. The internet provides a feeling of remaining anonymous which can cause someone to say something on-line which they might never say in person. Stalking may take the form of verbal abuse, sexual harassment, or repeated requests for a personal meeting through a variety of social media sites such as: e-mail messages, text messaging, blog or website postings, and postings on social media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube.

Types of Cyberstalking Charges

·cyberbullying (or cyber bullying);

·masquerading as the victim on-line;

·anonymously posting private information about another person;

·texting sexually provocative information or pictures (sexting); and

·on-line sexual harassment.

If you feel like your child, you or someone you know is in danger, contact the police immediately and cut off contact with this person or user, staying offline if need be until you are otherwise instructed. Do not install any programs, or remove any programs or take other remedial action on your computer or communication device during this process. It may adversely affect the investigation and any eventual prosecution.