State Representatives Dave Belton (R-Buckhead) and Pam Dickerson (D-Conyers) announced that Governor Nathan Deal signed Kelsey’s Law, or SB 160, into law at the State Capitol on Tuesday, May 5, 2015. Rep. Belton attended the bill signing ceremony for Kelsey’s Law, which aims to protect minors from cyberbullying.
“The real hero in this situation is the brave Kelsey Upton,” said Rep. Belton. “Not only did she stand up and confront cyber-bullying, but she fought hard to protect other teenage girls from enduring the same situation that she lived through.”
Kelsey’s Law was authored by Rep. Belton during the 2015 legislative session and named for a resident of Oxford, Georgia who was a victim of cyberbullying. Kelsey’s Law creates a misdemeanor for those who intentionally cause a minor to be identified as someone in an obscene depiction. This includes electronically imposing a minor’s face onto an obscene depiction or giving the minor’s name, address, telephone number, or email address. The violation applies to all Georgia residents, even if they conduct the act in another state. Charges can also be made against those residing in other states, if the accused commits the violation within the state of Georgia.
Also in attendance at the bill signing ceremony for Kelsey’s Law was State Representative Pam Dickerson (D-Conyers) of Newton County, who helped first draft the legislation for Kelsey’s Law. Also present were Randy and Melissa Upton, as well as their daughter Kelsey, whom the legislation was named for.
“We must continue to keep fighting against the injustices facing our youth, especially those who live right here in Morgan County like Kelsey Upton and Caleb Sorohan,” continued Rep. Belton. “Before I became a state representative and was still a school board member, I came to the State Capitol every day to push Caleb’s Law along to make it illegal to text and drive in our state. While the circumstances that brought this bill and Kelsey’s Law to the forefront are unfortunate, I am proud to take a stand and fight for the young people of our district and this state.”
For more information on Kelsey’s Law, or SB 160, please click here.