Twitter Target of Accused Capital Gazette Gunman Says Gaps in Maryland Law Allowed Threats to Persist

"Giving police more flexibility to respond to allegations of threats will likely raise concerns over First Amendment rights, said Danielle Citron, a law professor at the University of Maryland who specializes in cyberstalking.

Citron notes Maryland already has laws prohibiting the cyberbullying of minors and said those laws sparked a debate over First Amendment rights. Attempts to expand that law failed earlier this year over concerns the changes were overly broad.

Any change in regulating communication on social media must address free speech protections, she said. "You can offend people, you can draw strong emotion, but it’s protected speech," she said."