State Sen. calls for criminal charges for bullying

September 26, 2011 2:57:21 PM PDT
If you bully someone to the point that they commit suicide, there should be consequences according to one New York State Senator.

State Senator Jeffrey Klein wants consequences in the form of a manslaughter charge, and is warning the parents of bullies.

"Do something about your kids or they'll be punished under a very tough statute," State Sen. Klein, (D) Bronx, Westchester said.

Over the weekend, Lady Gaga stopped her concert to talk about her disgust with cyberbullying and suicides that result from it.

"Let's take a moment, stop the music and talk about Jamey," Lady Gaga said.

At the news conference, 15-year-old Jamie Isaacs, who endured bullying and cyberbullying half of her life says she complained and complained and then had to change schools and started her own website to help victims.

Even so, she says her little brother is now dealing with it.

"And this week, a kid will be arrested for that, for bullying him on X-Box," Isaacs said.

Jamie loves the idea that finally Senator Klein's proposal would punish extreme cyberbullies and put others on notice.

Weighing heavily on her are 3 suicides in the past year and a half linked to cyberbulling: Tyler Clementi, Phoebe Prince and last week, Jamey Rodemeyer, who was just 14.

"If they know that they can serve 15 years maybe something will happen," Isaacs said.

So, what was reaction on the street?

"If you don't touch anyone I don't think you should go to jail," said one person.

"Obviously that's a problem, but we shouldn't overreact," said another.