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New England News

Lawmakers Wonder If Anti-Stalking Laws Limit Free Speech

Edith Soto/Flickr

Vermont lawmakers are looking to expand an anti-stalking statute to cover instances in which a person "observes" or "monitors" another. But some see the changes as impinging on constitutionally protected free expression.
The House Judiciary Committee took testimony Tuesday on House Bill 818.

Superior Court Judge Helen Toor wrote to the committee in February that sexually suggestive remarks and gestures could be new causes for prosecution. She remarked that fraternity parties could result in a whole new court docket.

Auburn Watersong of the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence says the measure is aimed at serious cases of threatening behavior.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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