TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A newly proposed bill in Florida would add penalties and increase the severity of making harassing phone calls in the state.
House Bill 67, if enacted, would change the calls from a second degree misdemeanor to a third degree felony.
As written, HB 67 would amend current state law to make it so that anyone who makes a a phone call, and during the call “makes any comment, request, suggestion, or proposal which is obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, vulgar, or indecent” with the intention to “offend, annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass,” the person at the number would be committing a felony.
Additionally, even if the phone call is made and there is no conversation, if the caller does not disclose their identity, and the call is still made for the above harassing or obscene purposes, they will be committing a third degree felony.
If a caller causes a phone to repeatedly or continuously ring, again with the intent of harassing someone, or makes repeated calls and speaks with someone for the purposes of harassment, they are also committing a felony. Should HB 67 pass, it would take effect Oct. 1.