Should parents face charges in Polk bully case? - WFLA News Channel 8

Should parents face charges in Polk bully case?

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Polk girls arrested in cyberbullying death Polk girls arrested in cyberbullying death
POLK COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

On Tuesday, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd announced the arrests of  two girls who were charged with felony Aggravated Stalking in the bullying death of 12-year-old Rebecca Sedwick.

12-year old Katelyn Roman and 14-year old Guadalupe Shaw both face charges after investigators say they cyber bullied 12-year old Rebecca Sedwick. Authorities say that repeated taunting drove Sedwick to commit suicide.    

Related Content: Polk Sheriff Grady Judd announces arrests of girls in bullying death

On NBC's Today Show, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said charges against the two girls arrested for cyber bullying are possible. "Right now there are no criminal charges that we find,"  said Judd. "But if we can find a contributing to the dependency or delinquency of a child we certainly would bring that charge."

One local attorney disagrees. John Fitzgibbons is a former federal prosecutor and criminal defense attorney. He says this doesn't look like a case of negligence. "For example, lets assume a child sneaks out of a bedroom and night and goes and robs a grocery store. Should the parents be held accountable? Where should the line be drawn? " said Fitzgibbons. "A lot of parents try to monitor their children but it's very, very difficult because kids are clever. They know the parents are looking over their shoulder, and they have ways of staying a step ahead of the parents."

On Tuesday, Sheriff Judd announced the arrests of 12-year old Katelyn Roman and 14-year old Guadalupe Shaw. Both face aggravated stalking charges after investigators say they cyber bullied 12-year old Rebecca Sedwick. They say that repeated taunting drove Sedwick to commit suicide.

Related Content: Polk Cyberbullying victim laid to rest

Prosecutors wouldn't comment directly on this case, because they say it is a pending case.

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