49 year old Lori Drew (a.k.a. Josh Evans) pleaded not guilty in federal court to charges of Internet fraud and conspiracy to inflict emotional distress. Lori Drew is accused of setting up a false account on MySpace under the name of Josh Evans to knowingly and willfully harass 13 year old Megan Meier. The result of Drew’s alleged actions was that Megan Meier hung herself in her room after receiving such messages like “the world would be a better place without her”. Actually, the world would be a better place without people who would commit such senseless acts against children.
In May, a grand jury indicted the woman, Lori Drew, 49, under the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, used in cases in which hackers gain access to information stored on protected computers. It is the first time that statute will be used in a social networking case, according to the United States attorney for Los Angeles, Thomas P. O’Brien.
Ms. Drew is accused of setting up a false account on MySpace, the social networking site, which is based in Beverly Hills, calling herself Josh Evans and, along with other people, sending cruel messages to the 13-year-old, Megan Meier. Megan was a neighbor in a St. Louis suburb, O’Fallon, who had at one time been friends with Ms. Drew’s daughter.
What could any adult possibly be thinking to knowingly target a teenager like this? For an adult to “torment, harass, humiliate and embarrass” a minor and not think there are no consequences to their actions. Think again!
“Any adult who uses the Internet or a social networking website to bully another person, particularly a vulnerable teenage girl, should realize this has serious consequences.”
Drew and “co-conspirators” used her home computer to chat with Meier on MySpace and gleaned from online exchanges to “torment, harass, humiliate and embarrass” the girl, according to the indictment.