Should witnesses that fail to report a crime be prosecuted? After reading this thread, http://www.usmessageboard.com/curre...5-yr-old-is-raped-and-beaten-at-hs-dance.html I was wondering if people think the witnesses to that brutal act that did nothing to stop it should be prosecuted in some manner? CA currently has a law that allows for the prosecution of somebody that is aware of sexual crimes against anybody aged 14 or younger, but does not report it. Could such a law have a detrimental effect? What if somebody was not aware that what they had witnessed was a crime? Suppose they found out later that is was a crime being committed? Would they be willing to come forth and testify if they knew they could potentially be prosecuted for not having contacted the police in the first place? I'm not talking about something so obvious as the crime in the linked thread, but something that was perhaps more ambiguous. While I do believe that all citizens should report crimes if they witness them, do we really want to criminalize failure to do so?