A 35-year-old Michigan woman has been charged with a felony for writing derogatory and harassing Facebook posts about a former acquaintance. The charge, one count of unlawfully posting a message, carries up to a two-year prison sentence and $5,000 fine.
The accused Facebook harasser, Rene K. Kolka, allegedly began writing posts about the victim last fall. She allegedly called the victim a “slut” and “skinny tail coke head,” saying “we all know her skanky ways” and warning others “don’t catch an STD.”
The woman on the receiving end of the cruel remarks contacted police on October 19, and the cops soon tracked her down. Kolka didn’t deny that the posts were on her page, but she said her account had recently been hacked and that she would remove the offensive comments. Evidently, the police and the courts did not believe her.
While the punishment may seem severe (especially compared to other content on Facebook that is allowed to remain posted), it does violate Michigan state law. The prosecution previously offered Kolka a delayed sentence if she pleads guilty or no contest to the charge, so it seems likely that she could avoid jail time. But still: think twice before you post something mean on Facebook. Doing so could land you in hot water with the law.