CNN does not typically identify minors who are charged as juveniles, but the network is doing so in this case because their identities have been publicized by law enforcement and have received extensive publicity in their local media.
The abusive behavior that authorities say prompted Rebecca's suicide grew from a dispute between her and a former classmate over a boy they had both dated, police said this week.
Grady Judd, sheriff of Polk County, Florida, filed charges after the 14-year-old girl's taunting post.
"She forced this arrest," Judd said of the 14-year-old's alleged decision to post the message.
"This went further than bullying," Judd said. "This was stalking, and it occurred over about a 10-month period. Interventions were tried by the school and by the victim's mom to no avail. At that point, law enforcement had to step in. And that's why we made felony criminal charges, because if this can't be taken care of at home, certainly, the system has an answer."
Rebecca attempted suicide in December 2012, when she cut her wrists. The night before her deadly plunge, she sent a message to a boy she met on Facebook: "I'm jumping. I can't take it anymore."
As the case against Shaw proceeds, her mother is facing child abuse and child neglect charges in a separate case, authorities said. Vivian Vosburg, 30, was arrested last week after authorities received tips from residents that she might have been involved in beating children, Judd said. A minute-long video clip was posted online and showed a woman, whom Judd identified as Vosburg, punching two boys with her fist while shouting profanities.
After being arrested, Vosburg first said the beating was an accident but then said it "got out of hand" partly because she was having a bad day, Judd said.
Florida's cyberbullying case involves the sort of tragedy that begs for a public response, but some experts said the remedies are complicated because the offenders' conduct is juvenile by nature. Cyberbullying is the repeated harm inflicted by means of computers, cell phones and other electronic devices.
"You do feel your emotions swell and you feel a reflexive call for justice," said Sameer Hinduja, co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center and a criminology professor at Florida Atlantic University.
The accused bullies are transitioning from child to teenager, struggling with peer perception, self-worth and identity, Hinduja said. That's why parents and schools must be involved in addressing the problem. Hinduja said he wonders if the two defendants in the Florida case deserve a chance to be placed under strict supervision rather than have them "in the juvenile justice system and labeled deviants."
"We're treading new ground, and you need everyone not to freak out," Hinduja said. "People said they deserve to be punished or in a juvenile home or facility. I do want to be gracious to everyone, but I want them to pause and take into consideration all these elements."