In yesterday’s post, I posted Tennessee’s law on stalking. That provides a backdrop for today’s blog post. Cyber stalking is accomplished by text messaging or other means of electronic communication. I spoke with an Assistant District Attorney here in Nashville,TN who handles domestic violence cases, and he reported that he recently prosecuted a case in which cyber stalking was done via Facebook messages.
An article in the Washington Post illustrates the growing problem in dating violence. The Post reported that one women received over 758 texts in one day. Cyber stalking may also be involved in the Virginia lacrosse player’s murder. The defendant in her murder case removed the computer when he fled the scene of the crime.
"What technology offers is irrefutable evidence of the abuse," says Cindy Southworth, founder of the Safety Net Project on technology at the National Network to End Domestic Violence, who says it helps in court and is hoping for an increase in conviction rates.
Most electronic communication leaves digital evidence of the contact. Unconsented contact is defined in T.C.A. 39-17-315
(5) “Unconsented contact” means any contact with another person that is initiated or continued without that person’s consent, or in disregard of that person’s expressed desire that the contact be avoided or discontinued. Unconsented contact includes, but is not limited to, any of the following:
It includes sending mail or any electronic communications to that person.
So be careful what you say and how often you say it.