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January 27, 2007

Why Crimes Don’t Just Happen … TN Teens Released after making On-line Threats

Posted in: Child Welfare,Crime,Internet

There are supposed to be consequences to one’s actions. When there are not we serve Dangerneither the public at large or the people acting irresponsibly. Such is the case in Tennessee where six teen girls were released after having made on-line threats.

DUNLAP, Tenn. – A juvenile court judge on Friday released six high school girls from police custody two days after they were accused of making threatening online posts about classmates, teachers and others, including President Bush.

They first considered it a joke, but authorities then found the ninth-graders’ online MySpace pages and postings with the word “kill.”

The girls were released as it was deemed that they were not a threat and that there was no imminent threat of attack. The girls were charged and ordered to under go evaluation.

The girls were also removed from school and told to take classes off campus, prosecutors said. They cannot have access to weapons and must undergo psychiatric evaluations.

The question arises in these situations, “One is that it’s very serious; the other is that it’s just goofy girls?” What do you think? Does a situation that goes unpunished and is brushed off as just kids being goofy have the ability to escalate to something greats? By not taking actions seriously in their inception, does it create a fixation and escalation to something more violent? Threats are threats. Who is to say that that such a situation does not escalate into things that we have seen all to recently. High school kids beating up others in on-line videos, other acts of violence and children bringing guns to school to get even as in the case of Columbine.

All to often we take the approach when dealing with crimes that it does not meat a certain level until it ultimately winds up in a murder. It happens all the time with child predators. We do not take it seriously until they have done the unthinkable. Nipping problems in the bud may be the answer.

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