Bullying is taken very seriously in the state of Nevada. In fact, when an electronic device is used to engage in bullying behavior, the person who use that device could be charged with a bullying crime and could face criminal penalties. The laws against bullying apply specifically to minors, which means that a child who engages in bullying without a full understanding of the impact of his or her actions could find himself involved in the criminal justice system.
If you are accused of bullying or if you are the parent of a child who has been accused of bullying, you need to take these accusations very seriously. A conviction could derail your child’s future or your life, and could cause you or your family to have to cope with serious legal consequences. You need an attorney who understands the laws applicable to bullying via electronic communications devices and who can help you to put together a legal strategy that will reduce the likelihood of serious consequences being imposed.
LV Criminal Defense has provided representation to many defendants accused of all different types of crimes against persons, including bullying offenses. As soon as you or your child has been accused of wrongdoing, we can be there for you during the interrogation and help you to make decisions as your case moves along in the criminal process. Just give us a call to get help facing the accusations against you so you can find out what a Vegas defense attorney can do to help you.
Bullying by the use of electronic communications devices is considered a crime against another person, so the offense is defined in Chapter 200 of Nevada’s criminal code, which deals with crimes against persons. The relevant statute that defines bullying is Nevada Revised Statue section 200.900.
According to section 200.900, a minor is prohibited from knowingly and willfully using an electronic communication device in order to transmit or distribute an image of bullying that has been committed against a minor with the intention of encouraging, furthering, or promoting bullying to cause harm to the bullying victim. A minor is also prohibited from using other means to transmit or distribute an image of bullying against a minor with the intent to promote further bullying, encourage bullying, or otherwise cause the victim harm.
A minor is defined as anyone who is under the age of 18, and an electronic communications device is defined to include any device capable of transmitting or distributing an image of bullying. It includes a cell phone, personal digital assistant, computer, computer system, or computer network.
Bullying is defined to include a willful act that exposes a person to a negative action that would be highly offensive to a reasonable person. The willful act could be a written, verbal, or physical act of bullying. The single willful act of bullying, or a course of conduct, could be considered bullying if not authorized by law.
The act of bullying must be intended to cause the victim to suffer harm or serious emotional distress; must pose a threat of immediate harm or actually inflict harm to a person or property; must place the victim in reasonable fear of harm or serious emotional distress; or must create a hostile environment for the education of the bullying victim by interfering in the victim’s education.
Finally, an image of bullying is defined to include any visual depiction of one minor bullying another, including photographs, videos, or any other medium. In order to determine whether the image is an image of bullying, the court can inspect the victim, can view the image, can consider the opinion of a witness to the image, can consider the opinion of a medical expert who viewed the image, or can use any other method that is authorized by the rules of evidence.
A minor who violates section 200.900 will be subject to different types of penalties depending upon whether the minor has a prior history of convictions or not. If the minor commits a first violation, the minor will be considered a minor in need of supervision. If the minor commits a second violation, the minor can be classified as having committed a delinquent act. This means that the court could order the detention of the minor in the same manner as if the minor had committed a wrongful act that would be considered a misdemeanor if the offense had been committed by an adult.
Because a child could be adjudicated as delinquent if the child is found to have committed an act of bullying by use of an electronic communications device, accusations of electronic bullying should be taken very seriously. Conviction for electronic bullying could result in the minor being detained for the offense, which could derail the child’s future in many important ways.
If your child has been accused of committing the offense of bullying by use of electronic communication device, even if the offense is a first one, you should contact a Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer right away who has familiarity with the laws related to bullying. Our legal team can assist you in understanding the nature of the charges, can help you to determine what the prosecutor actually must prove, and can work with your family to develop the best response to the charges that your child is facing.
Our goal is to help ensure your child avoids conviction or that your child faces minimal or no penalties so your child is not taken into custody, left with a record that derails his future, or otherwise impacted adversely as a result of the criminal charges. It is important to reach out to our legal team as soon as your child has been accused of wrongdoing so we can begin working on the development of a defense strategy right away. Just give us a call today to find out how we can help.