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Cyberbullying Victims Want Online Bullying Labeled A Crime In Colorado

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DENVER (CBS4)- Victims of cyberbullying recounted their stories to state lawmakers in hopes of turning online bullying to be labeled a crime in Colorado.

The testimony at the state Capitol on Wednesday included stories from both teenagers and parents.

“Which put me in a really deep depression, I was going through a lot at that time,” said 14-year-old Ashley Berry as she described being bullied online.

Berry spoke to members of Colorado’s Senate about why she believes a law making cyberbullying a crime is necessary.

“I think it definitely makes it harder for our generation than it is for some adults to even understand because they didn’t grow up with that. So I think that, especially for me personally, knowing that I had to go home and see all of the things that I was dealing with at school, I had to see them from my bedroom, from the place that I considered safe. It wasn’t safe anymore for me,” said Berry.

State Senator Linda Newell, a Democrat representing Littleton, says the bill is designed to protect children in Colorado from online bullies who use social media to cause serious emotional distress.

“We have kiddos who are literally contemplating suicide because of cyberbullying. And that’s wrong,” said Newell.

Berry’s mother doesn’t want to see another child suffer like her daughter has.

“You know what really got to me was that my daughter, one of her friends at school was being targeted by the same group. And she started harming herself,” said Berry’s mother Anna.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is working on the details of the penalty to impose on those who commit cyberbullying. They are expected to vote on the bill on Monday.

The House passed the cyberbullying bill earlier this month.

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