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Morris County Prosecutor’s Office visits Randolph Middle School to talk about bias, cyberbullying

RANDOLPH TOWNSHIP, NJ (Morris County) – Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Supervising Assistant Prosecutor Samantha DeNegri and Sergeant Patrick LaGuerre Tuesday visited the students of Randolph Middle School, and lead a presentation on bias issues, cyber harassment and making smart choices about social media.

The presenters stressed they didn’t intend to scare the students, but wanted to educate them on the potential consequences of engaging in bias behavior. SAP DeNegri and Sgt. LaGuerre explained the difference between bias crimes and bias incidents, noting school administrators can choose to take disciplinary action even if an incident isn’t considered criminal. Poor choices about what you post online can also impact your employment or higher education goals.

Social media and technology today document everything, even “deleted” or “temporary” photos and messages can be potentially shared, and accessed through the device or via a subpoena sent to the app company. SAP DeNegri said the unfortunate reality of taking and sharing explicit photos – even with those you trust – is that you can lose control of where those photos end up, and there are legal repercussions for distribution.

SAP DeNegri and Sgt. LaGuerre said “treating others with respect and kindness, even online, can reflect positively on yourself.”

Students were able to ask questions of the presenters during and after the program.

The MCPO routinely holds bias and bullying presentations at area schools to communicate directly with students. This winter, Sgt. LaGuerre and SAP DeNegri visited Byram Lakes Intermediate School, Copeland Middle School, and Green Hills School.

“Students today are growing up in a very connected digital world. It’s the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office’s goal to help our students navigate that world, making smart choices and being mindful about how they interact online,” Prosecutor Robert J. Carroll said.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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