Canada Arrests Two Under New Anti-Bullying Law
Two men have been arrested by Canadian police Thursday in the case of a teenage girl who died after a suicide attempt that followed months of cyber bullying, including lewd photos of an alleged sexual assault that were posted online, Reuters reports.
The April 2013 death of Rehtaeh Parsons, a 17-year-old from Halifax, Nova Scotia, focused international attention on the issue of cyber bullying. She was taken off life support following a suicide attempt that her parents say came after months of sustained harassment following an alleged November 2011 sexual assault, when she was 15. Cellphone pictures of the incident circulated among her classmates and on social media sites, the article says.
A police statement did not say what the two men were arrested for, and no charges have been filed.
Police closed an initial investigation without filing charges, citing insufficient evidence, but a national outcry and an Internet campaign that claimed to have uncovered new evidence of the assault and the bullying that followed caused the police to reopen the case.
The arrests come the day after a new cyber-bullying law came into effect in Nova Scotia. The law permits anyone who feels they are being harassed online to seek a restraining order or sue on behalf of themselves or their children. Cyber bullies can face up to six months in jail or a fine of up to C$5,000 ($4,800), Reuters reports.