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The Connecticut Anti-Bullying Law

Posted on in Criminal Defense

bullying, criminal law, Connecticut bullying law, cyber bullying Connecticut lawyerThe national media focus on bullying in schools has led to legislation across the country, and the same holds true in Connecticut, where a law was signed in 2011. If your child has been charged with a crime related to bullying, you need to contact an attorney immediately.

In Connecticut, 25 percent of high school students report being bullied on school property. Across America, more than 900,000 students report being bullied online. In Connecticut, there are specific rules about how a school has to handle a bullying investigation. School staff must have streamlined procedures for bullying reporting and it must be investigated when any claim is made.

Since more and more schools are adopting zero-tolerance policies on any allegation of bullying, children that are accused may face immediate school-related consequences in addition to criminal charges. A bullying accusation can continue to follow a child for years.

Since there is not a statutory definition for bullying, schools can have different approaches about what they deem to be bullying. The highly subjective nature of this process can mean punishments for students who are accused. Schools and courts can construe bullying to mean any number of acts on a wide spectrum, including verbal assaults, hazing behavior, physical assault (anything from shoving to punching), cyber-bullying, abusive language, or even mind games.

With so much power in the hands of school administrators, parents should be informed of their rights and the rights of their child soon after any bullying accusation comes forward. In the past, schools might have been more lenient on situations that could be blown out of proportion, but the zero-tolerance policies towards bullying behavior could mean swift and serious consequences for your child. Don’t let a bullying charge destroy your child’s future. If your child has been accused of bullying in person or online, contact a Connecticut juvenile defense attorney today.