This update added to the list of what would be considered obscene or threatening behavior. It’s now illegal to use force, threats, or intimidation to interrupt or disrupt the carrying on of business. Electronic communication intended to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass someone now includes text, sound and images. This also includes things posted to a social media or other public media source.
Threatening or Intimidating Employers in Oklahoma
It’s illegal to use force, threats, or intimidation to:
- prevent or endeavor to prevent another from employing any person,
- compel another to employ any person,
- force or induce another to alter his or her mode of carrying on business,
- interrupt or disrupt the carrying on of business, or
- limit or increase the number of his hired foremen, journeymen, apprentices, workmen, laborers, servants, or other people employed by the employer, or their rate of wages or time of service.
This crime is a misdemeanor. The maximum punishment in jail is one year. The maximum fine is $500.
Obscenity, Threatening, or Harassment by Telephone or Other Electronic Communication
It’s illegal to willfully, by means of a telecommunication or other electronic communication device:
- Make any comment, request, suggestion, or proposal that is obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, or indecent;
- Make a telecommunication or other electronic communication including text, sound, or images with intent to terrify, intimidate, or harass, or threaten to inflict injury or physical harm to any person or property of that person;
- Make a telecommunication or other electronic communication, whether or not conversation ensues, with intent to put the party called in fear of physical harm or death;
- Make a telecommunication or other electronic communication, including text, sound, or images whether or not conversation ensues, without disclosing the identity of the person making the call or communication and with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any person at the called number;
- Knowingly permit any telecommunication or other electronic communication under the control of the person to be used for any purpose prohibited by this law; and
- In conspiracy or concerted action with other people, make repeated calls or electronic communications or simultaneous calls or electronic communications solely to harass any person at the called number(s).
“Telecommunication” and “electronic communication” mean any type of telephonic, electronic or radio communications, or transmission of signs, signals, data, writings, images and sounds or intelligence of any nature by telephone, including cellular telephones, wire, cable, radio, electromagnetic, photoelectronic or photo-optical system or the creation, display, management, storage, processing, transmission or distribution of images, text, voice, video or data by wire, cable or wireless means, including the Internet. The term includes:
- A communication initiated by electronic mail, instant message, network call, or facsimile machine including text, sound, or images;
- A communication made to a pager; or
- A communication including text, sound or images posted to a social media or other public media source.
Use of a telephone or other electronic communications facility under this law includes all use made of such a facility between the points of origin and reception. Any offense under this law is a continuing offense and will be deemed to have been committed at either the place of origin or the place of reception. In other words, if you are out of state and make a harassing call to someone in Oklahoma, you will be deemed to have made it in Oklahoma so that you can be prosecuted in Oklahoma.
Punishment for Obscenity, Threats, or Harassment by Telephone or Electronic Communication
A first offense is a misdemeanor. The maximum punishment in jail is one year. The maximum fine is $500. A second offense is a felony. The maximum punishment in prison is two years. The maximum fine is $1,000.
SB 752 amended 21 O.S. §§ 838 & 1172. It went into effect on November 1, 2019.
Sources: SB 752 and 21 O.S. §§ 9, 10, 838, & 1172
Current as of March 1, 2020. Laws are subject to change at any time! Go to the sources cited above for the most up-to-date law.