Washington, D.C. – The House of Representatives today approved by a vote of 409-2 the Combat Online Predators Act (H.R. 4203). This bill, introduced by Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) and approved by the House Judiciary Committee in November 2017, protects children by combating the stalking and cyberstalking of minors. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) applauded today’s House approval of the Combat Online Predators Act in the statement below.

Chairman Goodlatte: “I applaud the House of Representatives for approving the Combat Online Predators Act to protect children from cyberstalkers. The advent of the Internet and advancement in technology has improved all of our lives but it has also provided stalkers with new ways to prey upon innocent victims. Too many Americans have become victims of stalking and cyberstalking, especially minors whose lives are increasingly online and on social media. I commend Congressman Fitzpatrick for his work on the Combat Online Predators Act and call on the Senate to pass it without delay. We must ensure law enforcement has the tools needed to combat this crime.”

Background: The Combat Online Predators Act increases the maximum term of imprisonment by up to five years for the most serious forms of stalking and cyberstalking of a minor. The bill also calls on the Department of Justice to evaluate federal, state, and local efforts to enforce laws relating to stalking and determine best practices for preventing this crime against children.