Ashley Judd to press charges over vulgar tweets during Kentucky game

Actress and die-hard Wildcats fan takes on those who aimed hateful tweets at her during SEC championship game

Actress Ashley Judd said she's pressing charges against the cyberbullies who explicitly attacked her on social media over a tweet she posted during the SEC championship game Sunday between Kentucky and Arkansas.

"Everyone needs to take personal responsibility for what they write and not allowing this misinterpretation and shaming culture on social media to persist," Judd said Monday on “MSNBC Live with Thomas Roberts.” "And by the way, I'm pressing charges."

A diehard Kentucky fan, Judd was on hand at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville for the Wildcats' 78-63 victory over Arkansas and was tweeting during the game. At one point, she sent out a tweet criticizing the Razorbacks' style of play. That tweet has since been deleted, but she described it to NBC News.

"If I were in a more calm state of mind, I might have phrased [it] differently," Judd told Roberts. "I might have said, 'I feel really disappointed with what seems [like] ultra-aggressive play.' Instead, what I wrote [was], 'I think Arkansas is playing dirty.'"

What followed, Judd said, was a slew of hateful comments.

"The amount of gender violence that I experienced is absolutely extraordinary," Judd said in an interview with Craig Melvin that aired Tuesday on NBC's "Today." "And a significant part of my day today will be spent filing police reports at home about gender violence that's directed at me on social media."

Melvin asked, "That many people?" She responded, "That many people, that explicit, that overt."

Judd also spoke out immediately against the attacks on Twitter, retweeting a particularly vile sample comment and tweeting, "When when I express a stout opinion during #MarchMadness I am ... threatened with sexual violence. Not okay."

She continued defending herself Monday on Twitter: "Example: I am mentally weak for not tolerating sodomy threats. '@AshleyJudd oversensitive liberals like are you that mentally weak?'"

According to Melvin, Judd "does not anticipate these cases are going to be prosecuted vigorously, but she does want to send a message."

Earlier this month former baseball star Curt Schilling threatened to take legal action over vulgar tweets toward his 17-year-old daughter.

Twitter said in a statement to NBC News that it is trying to crack down on cyberbullying: "We now review five times as many user reports as we did previously and we have tripled the size of the support team focused on handling abuse reports."

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