Breckenridge tackles e-harassment |

Breckenridge tackles e-harassment

summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado

BRECKENRIDGE ” The frequency of complaints about threatening text messages and e-mails has led the Town of Breckenridge to redefine its own definition of harassment.

“What we’re finding more and more is that our harassment cases involve cell phones and text messaging where people (make contact) repeatedly and at odd hours,” said Breckenridge Assistant Police Chief Greg Morrison.

Morrison said many such cases pertain to break-ups, when exes send up to 50 electronic messages over a night.

A recent case involving a person who received several text messages was filed with Summit County Court under state statute. It was not prosecutable under town law because the existing ordinance, adopted in 1981, doesn’t address electronic harassment.

Town attorney Tim Berry said the state law incorporating electronic communications has been in place for several years. Town council is expected to approve the ordinance on final reading at its meeting next Tuesday.

Council member Jennifer McAtamney said such cases are better dealt with locally than when “pushed to a larger arena.”

“We’re probably a little behind the rest of the country in the texting thing,” she said. “We’re a little slower to embrace (it) because we’re too busy riding mountain bikes.”

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