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State lawmaker working to change law that prohibits parents from spying on children

State lawmaker working to change law that prohibits parents from spying on children (FILE)

(NEWSCHANNEL 3) - You could spend time in jail if caught snooping on your child.

State law says it's a felony to listen to your child's phone conversations on a landline.

Newschannel 3 explains how one state lawmaker is working to grant parents an exemption.

State Representative Peter Lucido says it's an outdated bill he's working to fix. But he says parents shouldn't hesitate to remind their kids who's paying the bills in the house.

The last thing teenagers want is for their parents to know what they're talking about on the phone.

"I feel I should be able to also grow on my own without also having my mom or my dad always on my back," said Kennedy Walker, a Kalamazoo teen.

"Lets face it--parents need to step up their game. They need to step up their game and be accountable for their children's actions, because they are taking control of their child's life," Rep. Lucido said.

Lucido says sometimes parents have to listen in on their kids conversations for their safety.

But state law says it's illegal to do so on landlines.

"I've learned that there's multiple cases throughout the state that's been charged because it's the black letter law, the prosecution has to charge. That's their authority," he said.

Lucido says nothing has been done about the law since its creation.

Now that he's in the legislature, Lucido says he's working to update it in order to defend parents from a felony charge.

"They could be put on probation, they could pay fines and cost, and up to jail time. And that's sad when a parent has to go to jail for taking precautionary, protective strikes to make the child is a good person in our society today," he said.

Lucido says he understands some kids may find it invasive, but says there comes a point when parents have to put their foot down to protect their children.

"It's my house, my rules. You don't want to live by them, I can have you emancipated if I want to take you to court before your 18th birthday and get you all signed up for what's called the real world," he said.

Lucido's exemption for parents is just a proposal right now.

As the law currently stands, parents or guardians could spend up to two years in prison and pay a two thousand dollar fine.

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