A lot of crimes have been around for decades or centuries -- or longer -- and you know the ramifications well. It almost feels like they didn't need to be written into law. People inherently understand that the law prohibits things like outright theft, arson, burglary and murder.
For many people, those clear crimes aren't the problem. You're not going to break the law on that level. However, that does not mean you aren't breaking it at all. As technology changes, brand new crimes are getting created. If you do not know what is illegal, you may not even realize you've broken the law until the police arrive.
Below are four examples of these new crimes.
1. Online bullying.
Anyone, of any age, can get accused of online bullying. While the general concept of bullying has existed forever, lawmakers have recently taken a far stronger stance against it than they ever did in the past. They've also modified laws to include cyber-bullying, a relatively new phenomenon that largely happens on social media sites. Michigan has cyber bullying laws, so watch what you type.
2. Flying drones in restricted airspace.
Drones have turned into an excellent way to get aerial photos, and many who embrace the hobby simply buy them and fly them without thinking twice. However, federal regulations restrict certain airspace, typically wherever passenger aircraft are going to be operating at low levels -- such as near a forest fire or an airport.
3. Using someone else's credit card online.
Never use a card that is not yours. Not even if you think the person won't care or you thought you got permission. In the old days, you'd get caught trying to forge the signature, but online purchasing changed all that. All you have to do is type in the information. One simple mistake, using someone's card because it's convenient or because you mistakenly thought they told you it would be all right, can cause you to commit fraud.
4. Selling drugs online.
People who legally obtain drugs sometimes do not realize that selling them online, as easy as it may be, is still illegal.
For instance, perhaps you're seriously injured in a car accident. After you get out of the hospital, you're on painkillers. You don't use up the entire supply before you're feeling good enough not to need them, so now you have half a bottle of pills. Do you take them anyway? Do you throw them out? If you're just going to waste them, why not sell them?
It's still illegal. It doesn't matter that you did have a legal prescription when you sell them to someone else.
Have you accidentally committed a crime and found yourself facing serious charges? You must know all of your legal rights.