Threatening Tweets Land a Teen in Jail

This is such a fantastic story in terms of a global teaching moment. Here’s the story: according to police, a 17-year-old high school student threatened to kill a female classmate in person and also posted multiple threats on his Twitter account. That is a fact. No one is denying that. But what a lot of people, his friends in particular, are saying is that it was merely a joke; he wasn’t serious, and ‘if you knew him, you’d know it’s a joke.’

The problem is that a face-to-face threat is one thing, but following it up with tweets is another. In this post-columbine world of mass shootings, what you say online is going to be taken very seriously by a LOT of people that DO NOT KNOW YOU.

I don’t know the accused, and, frankly, I am sure he didn’t really intend to kill a classmate, but that doesn’t mean the entire community and the girl that was threatened is wrong in taking this seriously.

The big lesson here is that while the Internet has seemingly shrunk the entire world, there is still a very big world out there and when you put something on the Internet, you put it out there for everyone to see. That includes people that are outside of your real-life small town/world…

It is so important for parents to tech their children this lesson. It is so important to KNOW how your kids are using the Internet. From their very first interactions, to their teenaged social network profiles, the monitoring should never stop. PC Pandora computer monitoring software is the best tool you can use to be fully in the know of your child’s Internet activity…

October 18, 2012
Police say Marshfield teen told classmate he would kill her
By Patrick Ronan, The Patriot Ledger

MARSHFIELD — Students who know Kyle Stockford said his sense of humor is odd, one that teeters between funny and disturbing.

But joking or not, Stockford’s recent tweets and his comments to a fellow student have landed him in court to face criminal charges. Police said the 17-year-old Marshfield High School student threatened to kill a female classmate in person and also posted multiple threats on his Twitter account.

“He said that he hated school and he needed to kill someone and that he was plotting something,” Marshfield Police Chief Phil Tavares said of Stockford’s tweets. CONTINUE READING›

October 19, 2012
Friends defend Marshfield teen charged with making threats; Marshfield teen’s arrest shows power of Twitter
By Patrick Ronan, The Patriot Ledger

MARSHFIELD — One tweet said: “How can you ruin his life?”

Another said: “Clearly it was a joke.” One said “He’s harmless.”

A group of teens have taken to Twitter to show their support for Kyle Stockford, 17. He is the Marshfield High School junior who was arrested Wednesday after police said he threatened to kill a classmate and posted threatening tweets about his school.

Defenders of Stockford claim he is being treated unfairly by police, his school and the media for making some edgy jokes, while police and prosecutors say threats of murder are no laughing matter. Both sides, however, are in agreement that Stockford’s arrest reflects a broader lesson: Think before you tweet. CONTINUE READING›

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