Meowing at Neighbor Isn’t Criminal Harassment

You may recall that I previously blogged on the story of the 14 year old boy who, with malice, meowed repeatedly (at least twice) at an elderly neighbor, which led to a criminal prosecution for harassment. At that time, I said “meowing during chance encounters between neighbors, even if the meow is communicated with maximum snarkiness, is not a crime.” Not surprisingly, the judge agreed, dismissing the case (which never should have been brought) but also admonishing the boy for immature behavior. If I were the judge, I’d have issued a couple of other admonishments: one for the neighbor (get a thicker skin) and definitely one for the prosecutors (focus on real crimes).