Maryland Internet crimes conviction gets student mental help

On behalf of Jack B. Rubin, PA posted in Internet Crimes on Wednesday, November 7, 2012.

Internet crimes are often taken seriously, especially when they involve threats of mass violence. One University of Maryland student found this out for himself after police accused him of making violent threats online. The young man recently pleaded guilty and received a sentence that will allow him to get the mental health assistance that he appears to need in light of his admission to these Internet crimes.

The threats first came to police attention when fellow students reported them. Apparently, the online postings threatened a shooting rampage on campus, one which would purportedly kill enough people to make national news. The threats evidently inspired a panic among students, understandably so in light of mass shootings that have happened over the past years.

Investigators managed to track down the accused student by using the same Internet medium that he made use of to post his threats. The student expressed remorse for his actions and said that he had been going through a great deal of stress and mental issues at the time. He said that he never intended to actually hurt anyone, and the police investigation seemed to bear that fact out. Authorities did not recover any weapons at either his or his parents’ residences.

A Maryland judge sentenced the student to three years of supervised probation, along with a six-month suspended sentence. He was sentenced to mental health court, which will hopefully allow him to get the sort of help that he needs. Internet crimes are taken seriously and should be, but in cases where defendants are proven to have not intended actual harm to others, a conviction may result in a sentence that includes appropriate mental health services. Often, having a counsel experienced in criminal defense can help make sure that defendants understand all of their legal options while protecting important legal rights and fight for the best possible result.

Source: CBS Baltimore, “Univ. Of Md. Student Sentenced To 3 Years Supervised Probation For Threatening Campus Shooting,” Oct. 25, 2012

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