SENATE, No. 3859







Sponsored by:


District 7 (Burlington)






     Requires law enforcement develop protocol for social media in certain circumstances.



     As introduced.


An Act requiring law enforcement to develop a protocol for the removal of social media posts in certain circumstances and supplementing Title 52 of the Revised Statutes.


     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:


     1.    a.  As used in this act:

     “Local police department” means a county police department established pursuant to N.J.S.40A:14-106, and a municipal police department established pursuant to N.J.S.40A:14-118.

     “Missing person” means an individual whose status is under investigation by the Missing Persons Unit in the Division of State Police in the Department of Law and Public Safety.

     “Wanted Person” means an individual with an outstanding arrest warrant or pending charges in the New Jersey Wanted Person System (NJWPS) or the New Jersey Criminal Justice Information System (NJCJIS) in the files of the National Crime Information Center (NCIC).

     b.    The State Police and every local police department in this State that uses a social media platform to post information of missing persons or wanted persons shall develop and implement a protocol for the publishing and removal of the posting.  The protocol shall include a deadline of no more than six months for the removal of a posting of a wanted person who has been arrested or whose charges have been dismissed, or a missing person who has been found.


     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.





     This bill requires the State Police and local police departments that use social media to post information regarding missing or wanted persons to develop and implement a protocol for the posting of that information and for the removal of the posting no later than six months after the issue is resolved.

     Currently, there is no statutory requirement for the State’s law enforcement to remove social media postings of wanted or missing persons.  Therefore, a person no longer sought by police could be denied opportunities, such as employment, for appearing as a wanted person.  Similarly, a person who is no longer missing could endure unnecessary scrutiny.

     This bill seeks to alleviate the potential for harm that may be caused by the persistence of outdated information posted by the police on the Internet.