Ohio Bill Seeks to Punish Cyberstalkers, Protect Victims

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – An Ohio bill that’s headed to the governor’s desk seeks to boost protections for victims of cyberstalking and other forms of harassment.

The measure comes about 10 years after a suburban Cleveland woman says she found little legal recourse after she was the victim of threatening emails and faxes. She says a neighbor created a website to harass her and her husband.

The bill broadens the state’s stalking and telecommunications harassment offenses. It seeks to keep harassers from causing victims to believe that their family members will be physically or mentally harmed. It also would prohibit a person from posting text, audio or images on a website to abuse, threaten or harass someone.

The measure cleared the Legislature on Wednesday. Republican Gov. John Kasich is expected to sign it.