The Bogalusa Police Department reports that on Thursday (April 6, 2023 at 5:42 PM, BPD Officers arrested 51 year-old Jason Gavin without incident and charged him with Cyberstalking (LRS 14:40.3). Read the statute below the video.
The arrest stems from a Facebook post, shown at right. and was the subject of a March 30, 2023 Press Conference (see below) at which Bogalusa Mayor Tyrin Truong reported that a death threat to him was recently made on a Facebook post. He characterized the threat as serious and having racial undertones. The threat was been reported to the Bogalusa Police Department, the District Attorney's Office, and the Louisiana State Police.
LRS 14:40.3 reads as follows:
A. For the purposes of this Section, the following words shall have the following meanings:
(1) "Electronic communication" means any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature, transmitted in whole or in part by wire, radio, computer, electromagnetic, photoelectric, or photo-optical system.
(2) "Electronic mail" means the transmission of information or communication by the use of the Internet, a computer, a facsimile machine, a pager, a cellular telephone, a video recorder, or other electronic means sent to a person identified by a unique address or address number and received by that person.
B. Cyberstalking is action of any person to accomplish any of the following:
(1) Use in electronic mail or electronic communication of any words or language threatening to inflict bodily harm to any person or to such person's child, sibling, spouse, or dependent, or physical injury to the property of any person, or for the purpose of extorting money or other things of value from any person.
(2) Electronically mail or electronically communicate to another repeatedly, whether or not conversation ensues, for the purpose of threatening, terrifying, or harassing any person.
(3) Electronically mail or electronically communicate to another and to knowingly make any false statement concerning death, injury, illness, disfigurement, indecent conduct, or criminal conduct of the person electronically mailed or of any member of the person's family or household with the intent to threaten, terrify, or harass.
(4) Knowingly permit an electronic communication device under the person's control to be used for the taking of an action in Paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of this Subsection.
C.(1) Whoever commits the crime of cyberstalking shall be fined not more than two thousand dollars, or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.
(2) Upon a second conviction occurring within seven years of the prior conviction for cyberstalking, the offender shall be imprisoned for not less than one hundred and eighty days and not more than three years, and may be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or both.
(3) Upon a third or subsequent conviction occurring within seven years of a prior conviction for stalking, the offender shall be imprisoned for not less than two years and not more than five years and may be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or both.
(4) Repealed by Acts 2020, No. 352, §2.
D. Any offense under this Section committed by the use of electronic mail or electronic communication may be deemed to have been committed where the electronic mail or electronic communication was originally sent, originally received, or originally viewed by any person.
E. This Section does not apply to any peaceable, nonviolent, or nonthreatening activity intended to express political views or to provide lawful information to others.
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