Title 76 - Utah Criminal Code - Chapter 9 - Offenses Against Public Order and Decency - Part 2 - Telephone Abuse - Section 201 - Electronic communication harassment -- Definitions -- Penalties.


Published: 2019-05-14

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Utah Code

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Effective 5/14/2019 Superseded 5/5/2021 76-9-201 Electronic communication harassment -- Definitions -- Penalties. (1) As used in this section:

(a) "Adult" means an individual 18 years of age or older. (b) "Electronic communication" means a communication by electronic, electro-mechanical, or

electro-optical communication device for the transmission and reception of audio, image, or text but does not include broadcast transmissions or similar communications that are not targeted at a specific individual.

(c) "Electronic communication device" includes a telephone, a facsimile machine, electronic mail, a pager, a computer, or another device or medium that can be used to communicate electronically.

(d) "Minor" means an individual who is younger than 18 years of age. (e) "Personal identifying information" means the same as that term is defined in Section

76-6-1102. (2) A person is guilty of electronic communication harassment and subject to prosecution in the

jurisdiction where the communication originated or was received if with intent to intimidate, abuse, threaten, harass, frighten, or disrupt the electronic communications of another, the person:

(a) (i) makes repeated contact by means of electronic communications, regardless of whether a

conversation ensues; or (ii) after the recipient has requested or informed the person not to contact the recipient, and the

person repeatedly or continuously: (A) contacts the electronic communication device of the recipient; or (B) causes an electronic communication device of the recipient to ring or to receive other

notification of attempted contact by means of electronic communication; (b) makes contact by means of electronic communication and insults, taunts, or challenges the

recipient of the communication or any person at the receiving location in a manner likely to provoke a violent or disorderly response;

(c) makes contact by means of electronic communication and threatens to inflict injury, physical harm, or damage to any person or the property of any person; or

(d) causes disruption, jamming, or overload of an electronic communication system through excessive message traffic or other means utilizing an electronic communication device.

(3) A person who electronically publishes, posts, or otherwise discloses personal identifying information of another individual in a public online site or forum with the intent to abuse, threaten, or disrupt the other individual's electronic communication and without the other individual's permission is guilty of electronic communication harassment.

(4) (a)

(i) Electronic communication harassment committed against an adult is a class B misdemeanor, except under Subsection (4)(a)(ii).

(ii) A second or subsequent offense under Subsection (4)(a)(i) is: (A) a class A misdemeanor if all prior violations of this section were committed against adults;

and (B) a third degree felony if a prior violation of this section was committed against a minor.

(b)

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(i) Electronic communication harassment committed against a minor is a class A misdemeanor, except as provided under Subsection (4)(b)(ii).

(ii) A second or subsequent offense under Subsection (4)(b)(i) is a third degree felony, regardless of whether a prior violation of this section was committed against a minor or an adult.

(5) (a) Except as provided under Subsection (5)(b), criminal prosecution under this section does

not affect an individual's right to bring a civil action for damages suffered as a result of the commission of an offense under this section.

(b) This section does not create a civil cause of action based on electronic communications made for legitimate business purposes.