Cyber Bullying

Cyber Crime?
"I was accused of sexual crimes," says 17-year-old Andrew. "[The profile] had pictures of me, and it said that I have sex with my girlfriend when her dad's not home, that I smoke pot and I was homosexual " stuff that's just not even true. I printed off the URL and took it to the police station, but they couldn't do anything because it happened on the Internet."

Andrew worries how this false information could affect his future. "This is very serious to me. I lose all credibility. Colleges, if they find that page, they won't accept me," he says.

"When I first saw the imposter's profile page, I was totally, totally disgusted," says Andrew's mother, Brenda. "The pornographic conversations taking place, the sexual crimes that it said Andrew had committed, it was horrifying. I was very angry to see Andrew's picture on that page."

Brenda sprang into action, but says she's frustrated that the issue wasn't resolved. "I went to Andy's school principal. Since the MySpace page was not created on the school grounds, then it wasn't his problem," she says. "I went to the school board. I contacted the senator. I consider what happened to Andrew a crime."

Brenda and Andrew's state senator, Diane Black, joins the show via telephone. "We're obviously very frustrated with all of this bullying and cyber bullying that's going on," Dr. Phil tells her. "Is there anything that you can do in the state senate to bring about some type of legislative action to make this a crime, to hold people accountable in any way, and do you think you should?"

"I am the person who brought about the anti-bullying legislation in the state of Tennessee four years ago," Sen. Black says. "My concern was that children should be able to go to school and feel safe. There wasn't as much teeth in it [the legislation] as we would like for it to be. Certainly we'll go back and do that. Many times, that's what we have to do with legislation."

"I think you are to be commended for enacting a law and getting a bill passed that deals with bullying in the schools," Dr. Phil praises the senator. "If you would, keep us updated on the process when you guys start investigating where this can be expanded to help people like Andrew."