Thursday, May 25, 2006

'Groomer' guilty of procuring girl, 14, for sex
A MAN who used internet chat rooms and text messages to procure a 14-year-old girl for sex acts purposely set out to make her fall in love with him. Thats what the groomer does - gets their trust and tries to take them away - anyway they can.
The County Court heard that Meehan, of Endeavour Hills, communicated with the girl through emails, text messages and phone calls between June 29 and September 6 last year.
Crown prosecutor Daniel Caporale said that the pair communicated using some codes before Meehan drove from his Endeavour Hills home interstate to meet her.
The girl also sent him pictures of herself, the court was told. "She fell in love with him and he at least pretended to fall in love with her," Mr Caporale said. Pretty typical stuff - at least he got caught.......

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Centralia man charged with using Internet to set up sex with teen
A Centralia man has been charged with using the Internet to set up a sexual rendezvous with what he thought was a 13-year-old girl. Aaron L. Schaefers, 25, was charged with attempted second-degree child rape, attempted first-degree kidnapping with sexual motivation and communicating with a minor for immoral purposes. At least he was caught - how many don't get caught?

Detectives Say Man Wanted To Make Teen His Sex Slave
According to police, an Ormond Beach man had promised to turn the teen boy he was about to meet into a sex slave, but when Johnny Masters got to the Daytona Beach bus depot, it was Volusia County deputies he met instead. Deputies had set up the meeting online. Posing as a 13-year-old boy named "Will," Bloxom started a conversation with Masters in a Yahoo chat room aimed at gay men. Sex crimes investigators said they were proud of Wednesday's arrest, but said there were plenty of other Internet predators still to catch. Plenty more indeed....

Monday, May 15, 2006

Abducted Teen Rescued In Colorado
Man, Woman Arrested After Contacting Teen Over The Internet
Law officers said the 28-year-old man from Oregon and 33-year-old Utah woman had contacted the boy in an Internet chat room. Wallace County Sheriff Larry Townsend said the suspects talked with the boy about coming to live with them.
Townsend told the newspaper that the incident should serve as a warning to parents whose children use the Internet.
"Parents who allow children to use the Internet unsupervised are setting themselves up for heartache," Townsend said. "It’s unknown at this time what the abductors’ plans were, but we suspect it may have not been pleasant."
That just about says it all.......

Friday, May 12, 2006

House Bill Seeks to Ban Teens From Social Networking Sites
This could potentially shut down every forum and chat site in the country.....
A Pennsylvania congressman has introduced legislation that would ban minors from accessing social networking Web sites such as MySpace, and forbid libraries from making such access available.
However, the bill uses extremely broad language to define a "social networking" site, which would theoretically eliminate several Ziff-Davis Web sites, as well as other highly-trafficked Web sites across the Internet.
"Sites like Myspace and Facebook have opened the door to a new online community of social networks between friends, students and colleagues," Fitzpatrick said in a statement posted to his Web site. "However, this new technology has become a feeding ground for child predators that use these sites as just another way to do our children harm."
Okay so now are we going to remove the playgrounds from the schools too????

New Study Reveals 14% of Teens Have Had Face-to-Face Meetings with People They've Met on the Internet
New research by Cox Communications in partnership with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children(R) (NCMEC) reveals teens are engaging in risky behavior online but that parents and guardians can have an impact on that behavior. One-third of teens surveyed say they are considering meeting face-to-face with someone they've met from the Internet and 14% say they've already had such an encounter. While many teens are sharing personal information online and putting themselves in potentially harmful situations, the survey results show that when parents and guardians talk to their teens about Internet safety, their exposure to potential threats decline and they make safer online decisions.
Very interesting survey - here are some key results:
-- Teens have established a significant presence on social networking web sites:
-- 61% of 13- to 17-year-olds have a personal profile on sites such as MySpace, Friendster, or Xanga. Half have posted pictures of themselves online.
-- Older teens (16- to 17-year-olds) and girls represent the majority of youths who use the Internet for social interaction, meeting friends, and networking.
Now for the scary stuff:
-- 14% have actually met face-to-face with a person they had known only through the Internet (9% of 13- to 15-year-olds and 22% of 16- to 17-year-olds).
-- 30% have considered meeting someone they've only communicated with online.
-- 71% reported receiving messages online from someone they don't know.
-- 45% have been asked for personal information by someone they don't know.
Best Advice -Find out what your kids are doing before it's too late because they certainly don't understand the potential risk they are putting themselves in.

Horror of chat room date victim
A young Thai woman was murdered and her body cut into pieces on her first date with a man she met in an internet chat room.
Her body parts were found in different locations in Thailand.
This story is a bit extreme but...... It started in a chat room and ended in the news....

The Dangers of for Teens
Myspace is one of the most popular online journal Web sites today. Teens use it as a meeting place where they can tell about themselves, post pictures, play their favorite songs, and chat with people around the world.
"The kids are putting so much personal information on these Web sites that it's very, very easy for anyone who wants to find them in real life, to find them…Most parents are worried because they wouldn't read their children's diary, and they feel uncomfortable reading their online diaries. But parents need to realize that when a child writes a diary at home, it’s between them and the pages. But when children write a diary on the Internet, it's between their kids and 700 million people who want to read what they wrote." The Predators love this place because the kids feel safe there - safe to express themselves - oh Yeah, the Internet Predators love it.
Parents can help safeguard their kids online by being aware of where they are going on the Internet and what information they are communicating throughout cyberspace.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The Growing Cancer of Child Sexual Exploitation on the Web
This is an interesting story - our own spokesperson for the Homeland Security Department gets another "honorable" mention - can't trust anyone....
One of the people responsible for protecting children was recently accused of being a predator himself. A spokesperson for the Homeland Security Department was put on unpaid leave after being charged on April 4 with "preying on a child" through online sexual conversations with an undercover detective who was posing as a 14-year-old girl. - He even sent pictures of himself right from his office wearing a Homeland Security pin!!! *Sigh*
Everyone has heard stories about predators lurking online, searching for young children on whom to prey. The sorry truth is that the problem is growing increasingly severe. Fingers are pointing in every direction; no one really knows where to place the blame.
"It's not windows and cellar doors that sexual predators look for. It's your child's computer screen," reads an ad by the Advertising Council, a private nonprofit organization that produces public service announcement campaigns to raise awareness and inspire action.

Taking Off Blinders to the Threat of Online Sexual Predators
Society is starting to open its eyes to the prevalence of online predators who lurk in cyberspace looking to befriend willing young Web surfers. Still, many of the organizations working to spread awareness worry that people are realizing the dangers too late.
Very true statement - people are realizing the dangers too late - otherwise there wouldn' t be any news stories to follow.
Parents may be resigned to their children's need for secrecy, but they increasingly are realizing that the "buddies" with whom they confide aren't necessarily the kids next door and could very well pose as much -- if not more -- of a threat as a stranger on the street. The study showed that 28 percent of parents don't know or are not sure whether their teens talk to strangers online.
Parents were only slightly concerned about the issue of online safety, found research by the Advertising Council. They were more worried about things like pregnancy and drugs and not "as aware of the [dangerous] world of the Web, and the pervasiveness of the issues, and the vulnerability of their children as potential victims," Ellyn Fisher, director of corporate communications for the Advertising Council, told TechNewsWorld.
What's even scarier is that one in 33 youths who go online receive an "aggressive" solicitation of a gift in the mail or a phone call. "Those are the predecessors of meeting in real life,".... Scary indeed.

Monday, May 08, 2006

A recent poll by Leger Marketing found that most parents let kids surf unattended Hard to believe, but true. It's kinda like giving your eight year old a chainsaw for a toy.
The Leger Marketing poll conducted for AOL Canada said 14 per cent of children reported talking to someone they don't know while surfing the Web.
83 per cent of parents reported leaving their children unattended on the Internet, and more than 50 per cent said they believe the Web is safe for kids.
That's just not true, says Karen Robbins, AOL Canada's online safety expert and "Net Mom."
"Today's children are really the first generation whose safety can be compromised in their own home, at their own desk -- simply by being online," Robbins said in a news release.
This is a shocking new poll - 50% of parents believe the Internet is safe...... Don't they read the news? *sigh"
Children need to be monitored and protected when they are online - the parent needs to realize that and realize it quick - don't let your kid become a news story. Anyway.....

A MISSING teenager may have fallen into the clutches of an internet chatroom prowler, her distraught father said yesterday.
Chelsea Thomas, 13, left home early on Sunday with a suitcase and caught a train. She has not been seen since - and police are examining her computer and phone for clues.
Her parents Lloyd and Julie were worried about how much she was using chatrooms and text services.
"People who use chatrooms are not always who they appear to be - that's why we are worried about her safety." Lloyd, of Blackpool, added: "You always worry about who your children may be talking to."
There monitoring programs they could have installed when they started getting concerned - The Parental Control Suite does a fine job of monitoring computers.

Here is an eye catching headline:
Brookfield schoolteacher charged in Internet sex sting
A schoolteacher - teaching physical education to our kids.... not a very comforting thought is it?
"A longtime physical education teacher at Brookfield's Wisconsin Hills Middle School is due in court today in Milwaukee on felony charges that he sexually propositioned - and sent pornography to - what he thought was a 14-year-old online."
According to a criminal complaint, Buehler sent obscene pictures of himself committing a sex act over the Internet to a Milwaukee police detective who was posing as a 14-year-old girl in a Yahoo chat room...
Rob Baxter, assistant superintendent for human resources for the Elmbrook School District, said Buehler had a reputation as a "creative and energetic" teacher. Creative and energetic indeed.
"This was a very, very well-respected teacher," Baxter said. "Obviously there was a different side to him." Obviously.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Dateline has a series going on called "To Catch a Predator III". They show, in detail, how easy it is for your child to to get groomed by these Internet Predators. A very interesting read and TV series. Millions of our kids are online, but how do you keep them out of danger? Dateline’s unprecedented look at Internet predators is back. Find out how to keep your children from becoming a target... and watch as men get an unexpected date with Dateline!

Last nights story on Dateline turned out to be yet another eye opener - anybody listening? It's the latest in Dateline's month-long series of undercover investigations: children at risk from grown men online. We're back in small town America, where the investigation leads us to one of the most disturbing cases we've ever found. A warning: some of what you're about to read is explicit. Read More>> Kudos to Dateline!

A great quote from the following story:
“Predators meeting children on the internet has become a national epidemic,” Wadsworth said. “Everyone is familiar with the TV news programs that use adults posing as children to lure sex offenders to homes. Even with that attention and the previous arrest we made, we have no problem chit chatting with perverts.”

Wetumpka man charged with soliciting a minor in computer sting - A Wetumpka man has been nabbed on a sex charge after coming to Prattville Monday to allegedly have sex with a 14-year-old boy. Hungerford came to a Prattville park Monday to allegedly meet the boy Read More>> Good thing the boy was a cop....

The April 2006 News stories I ran across had at least one that shocked me a little:

A deputy press secretary for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security was arrested Tuesday at his Maryland home on charges he used his computer in an attempt to seduce a child and transmitted harmful materials to a minor Read More>> Not sure why that one shocked me but....

Girl Barely Saved from Alleged Sex Predator - Kentucky State Police troopers say it was a close call Tuesday night. They intercepted a man they believe was about to meet a 14-year-old girl. Troopers believe the two met in a chat room, and were about to meet in person for the first time. They say the girls parents had no idea. Read More>> Parents had no idea - no surprise there "sigh"

Convicted sex offender charged with targeting girl on Internet - A Rutland man convicted of sexually assaulting a minor has been charged with using a computer to attempt to lure a 13-year-old girl. Read More>> This one is a convicted sex offender - are they allowed to use computers? I don't think so......

In March 2006, there were the usual predators roaming the Internet and trying to groom your children. You have to keep in mind that these news stories are about the ones that got caught....

40-Year-Old Man Charged With Raping 14-Year-Old Girl - The forty-year-old man is facing 23 charges for allegedly raping and sodomizing a 14-year-old girl. Police say he first met the teenager on a phone chat line last summer. Read More>> This one can't quite be put in the same category as Internet Predators - I'm thinking that it started in an Internet chat room though. Is this something else we need to watch - phone chat dangers?

City Man Accused Of Flying To Alaska To Have Sex With Child - A Calgary man is accused of going to Alaska to have sex with a child. The case started on the internet and shows how this kind of crime knows no boundaries. Read More>> No limits , these people have no limits at all. Be afraid.

Parents Worried About Chat Rooms After Girl Disappears in Oklahoma - The FBI says she spends a lot of time on the internet, and could be with someone she met in a chat room. Read More>>

Teacher suspected in online sex case - Authorities are investigating whether a Spring Lake Park High School band director had an improper relationship with a former student after officials say they discovered him performing sexual acts via Webcam for a 13-year-old girl. Read More>> A teacher!! Enough said....

Web grooming perv jailed - A CHILD porn addict branded by the prosecution as "every parent's nightmare" - spent months posing as an online counsellor for abused youngsters to worm his way into the "vulnerable" 13-year-old's confidence. Read More>>

Brooklyn man charged with enticing Manasquan girl, 13; pair met on Net - A New York man faces child endangerment and other charges after he tried to entice a 13-year-old Manasquan girl to e-mail sexually explicit photographs to him Read More>

The following story coincides with a Kudos page for Officer Miller. He is a nominee for the America's Most Wanted All-Star, an honor given to those who go above and beyond the call of duty. Give him your vote. AMW will select the WINNER on May 9th, 2006

Chat room meetings lead to two arrests - Two alleged Internet predators were arrested within 20 minutes of each other. ''Officer (Larry) Miller was in a chat room and was approached by both subjects over the past week,'' Labis said. ''Both contacted him again last night and agreed to meet.'' Read More>>

February 2006 was a basically quiet month - maybe the Internet Predators don't like the cold. but any way...

Paedophile raped boy he met in gay chatroom - A 27 year old paedophile posed as a teenager in a gay chat room to rape a 14 year old boy. Read More>>

Sex attack on internet girl - A TEENAGE girl has been left traumatised after being sexually assaulted by a boy she met in an internet chat room. Read More>>

Teen Web hangouts can be gold mines for predators - They didn't fret about Internet predators. That changed this month when their 15-year-old daughter disappeared. They quickly learned from their daughter's friends and the computer that she might have ventured out to meet a man she had met on a Web site popular with teens. Read More>>

January 2006 was a pretty busy month for the Internet Predators. Here's a sample of some of the headlines I found:

Costa Mesa Man Arrested For Sexual Chats With Teen - The man, 56, is charged with committing a lewd act with a child of 14 or 15, using an underage person in an obscene manner and attempting a lewd act on a child. Read More>>

School worker arrested in molesting - Modesto police Thursday arrested a city schools employee accused of molesting a 15-year-old boy he met in an Internet chat room nine months ago. Read More>> A school worker arrestedfor chatting with young boys - working with young boys!

Paw Paw man charged with sexually assaulting boy he met on the Internet - Police say 38-year-old Arthur McNabb of Paw Paw used an Internet chat room to meet the child. Read More>>

Doctor set online trap for children by posing as young girl - AN EMINENT doctor posed as a teenage girl called “Katie” to swap photographs and sexually explicit messages with children in internet chat rooms Read More>> Did you read "Eminent" doctor - probably used to take care of our kids.

Texas man sentenced to 27 years in prison for soliciting sex from 15-year-old girl - A 61-year-old Texas man arrested in early January by Decatur police was sentenced Friday in U.S. District Court in Urbana to 27 years in prison for traveling to Illinois to have sex with a 15-year-old girl he met in an Internet chat room. Read More>> A Texas man traveled all the way to Illinois to meet a 15-year old.....

Man arrested for abducting girl - A man who allegedly lured a 16-year-old girl here by posing as a counselor in a Christian chat room was arrested in his Hickory Drive home Thursday after police said he picked her up in her Maryland hometown. Read More>>

Ordinary people with ordinary jobs trying to meet kids they met on the Internet - you never know who is talking to your kids do you?

The second post I make is from a gathering of news headlines from 2005 concerning Internet Predators and our children. Very scary how easy it is for a child to get caught up in a huge pile of Internet dangers. Anyway....

Chat Nightmares of 2005 - Parents Beware of Internet Predators

Another year over and the chat nightmares were quite prevalent in the news stories again. It seems they are never-ending and will continue to be unless parents teach children not too give out too much information in chat rooms. Of course, they don't listen anyway and I'll be sitting here next year writing about the same horror stories as I am right now. I just hope I'm not writing about your child. Parents need to monitor their children on the computer on a daily basis or read about them in a news story. The following stories are true news stories with links to the original stories here. If you don't think you need to monitor your children or your spouse on the computer, read on, one of these stories will likely change your mind.

Let's start with January of 2005 and see what some of the headlines were about:

Ottawa County man indicted in sex case involving boy, 13

An Ottawa County man is accused of having sex with a 13-year-old boy. Where do you think the man met the 13 year old boy? The boy told authorities he met him in November through an Internet chat room. This story was published on January 15 and they first started chatting in November. That's two whole months of chatting that somebody should have known about. This one could have been stopped with a monitoring program.

Missing girl found in Ohio

Man allegedly met Sacramento teen on WebShe was lured to the home of a 39-year-old man through an Internet chat room, authorities said. The Internet is the wild, wild West of today," Fong said. "It opens kids up to all kinds of people feeding on them." The targets are frequently girls age 13 to 15. Predators meet them in Internet chat rooms and "groom" them through "electronic flirting," Fong said. In the case of the 15-year-old from Sacramento, authorities believe she had been chatting on the Internet for "quite some time" with several individuals.Authorities said she was chatting for quite some time… interesting.

A CHILDREN'S charity last night criticized the "lenient" two year sentence given to a man who admitted having "cybersex" with a 14-year-old girl over the internet.

This is a story just to show you the kinds of things that go on in chat rooms."He got in touch with the girl, of Clackmannanshire, through an internet chat room after filling in an online profile in which he declared himself to be 19. He performed a sex act on himself as he watched the girl undress and pose in a sexually explicit manner via a live web link."
Enough said for January - Let's see what February 2005 brings us.

Policeman on underage sex charges

A VICTORIAN police officer started a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old girl after they met on an internet chat site, a Melbourne court was told today. The alleged victim told the court she first met Constable Howard on an internet chat site where they had conversations up to four times a week which were often of a sexual nature.She was chatting four times a week on a sexual nature with a police officer - What a nightmare.

Man Accused Of Luring Girl From Internet Chat RoomAlleged victim was sexually assaulted.

Salem man is accused of using a computer chat room to commit sexual assault. Police say the 23-year-old Hawkins contacted a teenaged girl in a Yahoo chat room, lured her to his southeast Salem apartment and sexually assaulted her.

Man Charged With Having Sex With Girl He Met Online

Two Meet In Hotel Room Hours After Meeting On InternetAuthorities said the 14-year-old girl took a cab from Gilmanton to Nashua to meet with the man. The two allegedly rendezvoused at a Motel 6 a few hours after meeting online in a chat room dedicated to sexual talk and behavior. Police said parents need to know where their children are and who they are talking to online. "This type of activity is becoming more frequent," Sprankle said. "The pedophiles that are looking to do this type of conduct use the Internet."Sometimes it takes months, sometimes only hours for contact - but it happens. Don't let it happen to your kid.

Let's take a look at some news headlines for March 2005

Man charged with inducing 14-year-old boy to have sex - Youngstown State student met youth in Internet chat room

The man used the Internet to arrange sexual encounters twice last year with the boy, who is now 15, according to the FBI and Beaver County detectives. According to an FBI affidavit, the man and the boy met in a homosexual chat room in June and arranged a meeting. They didn't have sex that time, according to the boy, but they did in September after Murdoch picked him up at his home. The victim said they had sex again after another online chat in July.Again, they first started chatting in June and ended in September. That's a long time in between for nobody to notice anything going on.

Man Faces Sexual Assault Charges In Douglas, Sarpy Counties

Omaha prosecutors said they are charging a man after he used instant messaging and an Internet chat room to meet young boys. He is being charged in Douglas County with sexual assault. He also has sexual assault charges pending in Sarpy County and is on probation for an incident with a 9- and 11-year-old. He met both boys on the Internet, and then arranged to meet them in person.Again, they met on the Net, but the prosecutors said this relationship was sexual, and went on for months. They said Payne also had sexual pictures of himself and the boy on his computer.
Not much more I can say about March, but take a look at April 2005.

Lakewood man pleads guilty in Internet sex case - He was arrested by Eureka Springs, Ark., police, county deputies and federal agents on Dec. 3, 2004, at a Eureka Springs motel. He was there to meet a 14-year-old girl he met in an Internet chat room. His arrest followed a nearly four-month, online relationship between the two.
Missing girl found in hotel with man - New Jersey man allegedly had sex with seventh-grader he met on Internet
She left home carrying a teddy bear, he was waiting nearby with promises of dinner and shopping trips. The two were later found in a Clinton Township hotel after having sex, police said. "Here's a good example of why parents have to be aware of what their kids are doing when they're surfing the Internet," said Clinton Township Detective Capt. Doug Mills.I think Captain Doug Mills says it all.

On to May 2005
Cops say man lured girl from Kentucky for sex

Police yesterday arrested a 71-year-old man they say used an Internet chat room to meet a 15-year-old Kentucky girl, lure her to his home and then have sex with her.Did you read that part about man being 71-years old? A 71-year old posing as a teenager in a chat room. Hard to believe but true just the same. You never know who your kids are chatting with. Do you want to know yet?
Pervert posed as 18-year-old in chat room to groom young girl

INTERNET pervert Oliver Jordan tried to snare a 12-year-old girl by posing as a teen in a web chat room.
Beware the stranger in your house
Det. Sgt Darryl Preston, who led the investigation into the previous case, said: "The main piece of advice I would give to parents goes back to what we were told when we were young about stranger danger - only now the stranger is in your living room. "Parents need to be aware of who their children are talking to; it's about keeping tabs and being interested in your child's activities."Chat rooms alone are not the danger. The grooming process extends beyond the internet to other forms of contact as the offender tries to lure a child to a meeting. Most of the time there will be personal correspondence, emails, letters, and sending money or presents - the online chat room is often just a starting point. Well said, Det Preston.

June 2005 was a busy month for the predators so here are just a few of the headlines.

Teen Vanishes After Going To Meet A Friend

A local teenager left her home in Thurston County for school, and never came back. Now, her father is sharing his agonizing story. The one clue Heather's father did find was on the family computer. He now knows (he could have found out sooner) Heather had been visiting a dating website where she put her picture online. Do you know if your child's picture is online somewhere?

Man Accused of Enticing Children Over the Internet

For today's youth, the internet is a gold mine of information and entertainment. Especially internet chat rooms. But it's these same chat rooms where child predators have an open window to entice kids. That's what police say this man was trying to do.

Child predator uses chat room to lure teenager

Harris County Sheriff's officials said a 14-year-old girl was sexually assaulted during a face-to-face meeting with a man she met in an Internet chat room. Sheriff's officials said the case should serve as a warning to parents who allow their children to use the Internet unmonitored. Enough said!
Take a look at some of the July 2005 stories.

Man accused of sexual contact with boy from chat room

A Sheffield Township man who has been classified as a sexual predator is facing charges of having sexual contact with a 15-year-old boy he met in an Internet chat room, according to Lorain County records. The man allegedly met a 15-year-old boy in a chat room online and had sexual relations with him at his home between June and September 2004. I'll bet they were chatting between June and September….Ahem

Murray Bridge CIB arrest man for new internet offence

It is alleged the man contacted a 15-year-old girl through an internet chat room, and lured the child to his home. The 48-year-old man was arrested on July 11. Sergeant Ferris said it was an important reminder for parents to be vigilant when it came to the use of internet chat rooms by their children. "What seems like an innocent chat with someone of apparently the same age, can in fact be anyone of any age," Sgt Ferris said. "It can be a fine line between invading your child's privacy and monitoring their chat room conversations for their safety.I couldn't have said it better myself Sgt Ferris.

Man Accused Of Luring 14-Year-Old Girl Into Sex

A Pennsylvania man is accused of using the Internet to lure a Missouri teenager into having sex with him. Prosecutors said the 36-year-old spent 18 months seducing a 14-year-old girl from Nodaway.18 Months! They are a patient people.
August 2005 was an extremely busy month for Internet predators - they know that schools out.

Forsyth homemaker charged with molesting 14-year-old

Authorities: 42-year-old woman met boy online, then seduced himA 42-year-old Forsyth County housewife faces sex charges after authorities say she seduced a 14-year-old boy over the Internet and then met him for several sexual liaisons. "For two weeks to a month, they chatted online," Moore said. "During that time, he believed that she was 14 years old." - They chatted for two weeks to a month!

Predators Lurking Inside Your Home?

If you're in your room feeling happy that your children are home and safe, think again. You're probably not aware that a sexual predator might be luring them at this very moment on the Internet with something seemingly innocent. "Parents don't allow children to lock their bedroom door, but they allow them to have secret passwords and have online friends that they don't know," Many predators approach children through online chat rooms, where they can pretend they're caring friends or paternal figures.That is exactly what they do and most parents don't even know but they can find out.

Police: Accused rapist might have more victims

An accused rapist is charged with raping a 15-year-old girl from St. Peters on Sunday, and he is accused of trapping a 16-year-old Lebanon girl and her friend in his garage earlier this year. He met the girls through online chat rooms. "I have a feeling we're going to find more victims," Hertz said. "I hope we don't, but something tells me we are."
Here are a couple headlines from September 2005.

Teen Murdered; Father Blames Chat Line

A South Side teenaged boy's body was found Aug. 18 in Diversey Harbor-and the father believes that a chat line was ultimately to blame, the Chicago Tribune reported. The teen's family last saw him on Aug. 17. He had called his grandmother about 9 p.m. that day to say he would return soon from seeing some friends, even though his father said his son knew few people in the area…..Think about that one

Cult Leader's son charged with rape

The son of an infamous cult leader was arrested in Oregon this week on charges he sexually assaulted a 13-year-old girl at a Danvers hotel. Police say the 30-year-old met the girl in an Internet chat room and lured her to the hotel last week. The girl told police that he had flown into Providence and picked her up in Braintree.
More headlines in October 2005

Abuser Groomed Boy Over Internet

A SEX beast who groomed a 14-year-old boy over the internet then abused him on "countless occasions" was facing a lengthy jail sentence last night.The man, 21, admitted having unsafe sex with the vulnerable youngster on an Ayrshire beach, in a hotel, in a house and in a car. Janice Green, prosecuting, said: "They met in an internet chat room in October 2004…..This story headlined in October of 2005! That is a whole year of chat room grooming - amazing that nobody knew. Somebody could have found out though.

Man, 29, admits to luring girl, 13, for sex

A 29-year-old California man admitted Tuesday he persuaded a 13-year-old Zachary girl to lie to her parents, run away with him and have illegal sex "because their age difference should not matter." During Tuesday's hearing, Vasquez admitted he met the child in an Internet chat room in December. The two began chatting "for hours each day." Chatting from December to October - "for hours each day"
There were many more headlines in November 2005

Minister Accused Of Trying To Meet Teen For Sex

An Ohio minister was arrested this week on suspicion of trying to lure a 15-year-old girl into having sex. Over a five-day period, police said, the 55-year-old allegedly spent time in an Internet chat room. Investigators said, at one point, he solicited the teen for sex and arranged to meet.

When children go out to play all alone on e-street

Too many parents haven't a clue what their kids are doing as they use the Internet, experts warn, and that means they're being exposed to dangers ranging from sexual predators to cyberbullying. The phone rings and it's the dreaded call from your child's school. Only this time, your daughter hasn't vomited, cheated on a test or talked back to the teacher. She e-mailed a naked picture of herself to a boy and it's now been seen by most of the school and, perhaps, beyond. Welcome to the age of parenting in a digital world. If I was her parent, I would want to know about that picture before the rest of the world seen it. There are programs available with the ability to stop this sort of thing.
December 2005 - supposed to be such a festive month…

Sex offender arrested

Many think chat rooms are harmless, but for one young teenager, her on-line messaging led to a dangerous encounter. A convicted sex offender goes online and meets a young, local girl. Now the man in his 30's is facing charges of rape. The rendezvous happened in New Bedford . But they "met" in cyberspace where police say the convicted sex offender was able to lure the teen away from her home. It was in an Internet chat room where they met at the beginning of November. New Bedford Police Investigators tell Eyewitness News the 31-year-old raped a thirteen year old girl this past weekend. When the 13-year-old returned home, the mother noticed something was different about her and then the girl told her what happened. Too bad the mother didn't know who she was chatting with for over a month.

Web-chat link in Girl's disappearance

THE distraught parents of a teenage girl missing for three days believe she is with someone she met on an Internet chat site. They have since been shocked to find an email contact list of more than 400 names and copies of emails their daughter had been sending and receiving over a general Internet chat site. A shame that wasn't found out sooner…She said her daughter, who had previously appeared happy, recently became secretive and deceptive. "Ever since she's had that (chat site) she's changed her personality," The mother said. "It's as if she's been brainwashed into something."Those are the signs of someone hooked on chat.

The headlines and stories are real news stories that happened in 2005. You can find all of the headlines and links to the original stories here. Some of the links may be dead links due to the fact that the Internet news sites don't keep the stories up indefinitely.
You can find out more about computer monitoring programs here. Don't let your child become a news story.

I'll start this off in the year 2004, when I first started getting seriously concerned about the number of Internet predators getting caught on a dialy, weekly basis. I summarized all the news stories I could find starting in January 2004:

So you think your kids are safe on the computer? You think your spouses aren't having a little online fantasy chats? Well I've got some news for you. I've put together a small portion of news stories that I came across in 2004 and compiled them here just for you. It's my firm belief that if your children or spouses are spending more time on the Internet typing their lives away than they are with you then you have a right to know what they are doing. When they leave the house you usually know what they are doing right? Leaving the house and going online are the same thing only the Internet may very well be more dangerous, especially for kids.Don't go away, read a couple headlines from January 2004:

Teen lured on Net Suspect drugged, taped teen, police say

The story starts like this:A 16-year-old Winnipeg girl was allegedly lured from her home by a man she met on the Internet who drugged her, drove her outside city limits, and then videotaped himself sexually assaulting her.Apparently this girl never met this man before talking to him online. He had lured her into meeting him then he drugged her and taped himself sexually assaulting her. She will have problematic memories of that moment for the rest of her life and the worst part is that it could have been avoided.
Coach sentenced for Internet offense

This is a boys and girls basketball coach. The story goes like this:The coach was sentenced in Rockingham Superior Court to nine months in jail for luring young boys over the Internet. He pleaded guilty to two counts of illegal use of a computer by asking minors to participate in sexual acts over the Internet. He faces up to seven years in prison.This was a coach, an icon to your kids trying to lure young boys. It took at least four students to complain before an investigation got started. We were lucky he got caught before any damage was done. That's not always the case though as you will soon find out.
A trained, alert parent would have noticed something was amiss. Parents are the front line of defense against all sorts of predators and should stay alert for the warnings signs. Nervous behavior or attempts to hide Internet activity are signs a child is trying to hide something. If your child becomes secretive or turns off the computer or closes an application whenever you come into the room, be suspicious be very suspicious. Make sure the computer is in a place where you can see what is going on. The bedroom is the worst possible place for a teenager's computer. If keeping the computer on a visible area is not an option, then there are other options I'll discuss later. For now, lets see what February 2004 had for Internet news stories:
CHAT ROOM SICKOExclusive: Net Nightmare Every Parent Fears

The story starts like this:Little Chloe Michaels was only 11 years old when he met her. But that didn't matter to sick Glen Parker. After months exchanging messages in an Internet chat room he was finally going to have his evil way.Chloe first started going into Internet chat rooms after her mother Cathy, a teacher, bought a computer to help with her homework. Each evening when she'd finished her schoolwork she would then log on to chat.The chat ended like this:After it was all over he dumped her, terrified, distraught…and pregnant…Of course the mother was devastated. You think mom, being a teacher, would have been watching her 11 year old a little better. Later in the news story:Cathy says: "It's every parent's nightmare. The Internet is totally banned in this house now. If parents have got the Internet they should be standing behind their child to find out exactly what they are looking at.
Banning the Internet completely is a little extreme and it would be nice if parents could stand behind their child every minute they are on the computer but that isn't always possible. So what is a parent to do? Don't worry there are some options. Let's see what happened in March of 2004:
Florida Man Arrested for Enticing Heartland Boy

A couple excerpts from the news story:An interstate trip lands a Florida man behind bars after allegedly meeting up with a 13-year-old Cape Girardeau boy for sex. Archillis Boglosa allegedly met the boy in an online chat room.As shocking as this story is, counselors say there are several reasons why a child will go on-line to meet other people for sex. But, they say the only good thing about this story the 13-year-old came back to Cape Girardeau alive.

Wife Catches Husband Cheating With 4 Women Online

Here are some of the highlights:Her story is not uncommon. She suspected her husband -- a truck driver who spends days away from home -- of having an affair. Her suspicions started when a computer entered their home. "I think as his knowledge increased for the computer, he spent more and more time on it," she said. She installed computer software called Spectorsoft. It allows you to see everything that someone does on their computer -- view every Web site they visit, read every chat they have with someone. Now that was a good idea. In no time, she said her suspicions were confirmed. "Once I had it installed, I had information by the next morning," she said. She got documents showing her husband's online chats, conversations he thought were private. She said these prove her husband was having an affair with at least four women. The information she got from spying on her husband changed her life. She has now filed for divorce.
How he lured a girl of 12 to fly away with him

The summer holidays were upon her and she should have been looking forward to a lazy summer. Instead:The 12 year old was walking into an accomplished pedophile's trap.The 32 year old man, a thickset former US marine already suspected of molesting two girls, had met his English quarry in an internet chat room and was flying across the Atlantic to be with her.Over the next four days police, FBI agents and psychologists on two continents took part in a desperate operation to track them down.Even from a continent away, he had been able to exert an astonishing hold on the child. She was besotted by him and trusted him.
That is exactly what these Internet predators do, they groom their prey as long as they need to gain their trust, they are a patient people. Which should give parents plenty of time to see what is going on. The police found out from looking into her computer that the 12 year old was chatting online for sometimes 11 hours at a time with her predator. The computer is not an electronic babysitter. Parents need to know what is being done on the computer.In the previous story at least the wife got smart and installed a computer monitoring program to monitor her husband, more parents need to do that to keep their kids safe. I have a list of the best of them on my web site but more on that later.Let's check out a couple headlines from April 2004:

Parents nightmare: Man held for luring teen

A young Kerr County teen fell victim to a 24-year-old man she met online. He is accused of driving all the way from the Austin area to meet the young teen in Kerr County.You always see it on TV, but you think that it's not going to happen here, said the girls' father. Sheriffs department officials say the girl fell victim to the man after meeting him in an online teen chat room. Now the girl is safe. But the scenario could have ended very differently, say officials. You never think that it will happen to you until it's too late.

Girl, 16, returned home

Police charged a Virginia man Monday with abducting a Rocky Mount teenage girl he met through an Internet chat room. The girl was discovered unharmed at the man's Springfield, Va., home.Sounds like the same scenario but the parents had a couple interesting points in this news story.When her mother asked about the chatting and phone calls, Samantha said she was talking to another teen from Elm City. "Usually, I can see right through her when she lies, but this time she got me," Michele Carroll said. "I've always known where my kids were and what they were doing. "She has her own computer in her room, but I never had any reason to think she would do something stupid like this."
This is a very typical scenario for kids today. They are chatting with anonymity and that let's them think they can do anything or be anybody while they are online. As often happens with children, what they do when they are not at home or when they are chatting online will filter into their everyday lives. If a child is lying when they are online chatting, then how long do you think it will take before they start lying to the parents? Not long, not long at all. Let's see what the headlines of May 2004 had to offer:

Altoona teacher accused of having sex with teen

A man, 51, met 16-year-old in Internet chat room. He was a graphic arts teacher that taught at the Blair County vocational-technical high school. He has been charged with luring a South Hills teen to meet and have sex with him after encountering the girl last year in an Internet chat room.Police consider the girl to be "a complete victim" and have released her to her parents. They also asked state police to obtain a search warrant to seize and check the contents of the teachers' computers.
Here is a must read news story of on of the victims telling her story, an interesting read. Here is the headline and some highlights of the story:

Online Predators: A Victim Tells Her Story

What started as an online conversation between her and another person she thought was another kid ended in a sexual assault. The Internet is a world of words, connections, and conversation. It is in this world and on a computer that a 14-year-old Fox Valley girl lived.For nine straight hours they talked through their keyboards and computer monitors. He learned a lot about her, and even watched her through her web cam."He wanted to meet me all of a sudden," she remembers.In August of last year, she was in an Internet chat room, where she often was. She was chatting with some friends when a stranger, cal_night2000, said he wanted to talk, too.Less than 24 hours after his very first hello, cal_night2000 was on the girl's doorstop. Instead of being a 14-year-old boy, he was a 28-year-old man.That's a pretty scary story. The two most frightening parts are how long they chatted together and what a short time it took for him to be at her doorstep. They chatted for nine hours straight! There we go again with the electronic babysitter. Within 24 hours this man had found out where she lived and was able to be at her doorstep. Scary isn't it? It's reality though, it can happen that fast. Let's see what kind of nightmares happened in June of 2004:

Internet meeting leads to arrest

A 21-year-old Durham man is in Randolph County Jail facing 13 sex crime charges, including rape, stemming from an alleged tryst arranged via the Internet with a 12-year-old Asheboro girl at a motel in the city.This kind of headline is all too common but the detective makes a very strong statement."The detective said the contact between the man and the girl had been going on for several months before the meeting was arranged. The message to parents is plain, he said. "Keep an eye on your child. There are programs out there for parents where you can go back and check on what your children are doing on the Internet."

Cops: Girl lured online Encounter on Internet leads to assault of 15-year-old, police say

A 21-year-old construction worker from Inwood was held on $30,000 bond after he was arrested last week and charged with raping a 15-year-old girl he met in a chat room on the Internet. Police said the man drove the girl around Lynbrook before taking her to the Merrick train station parking lot, where he forced her to have sex with him in his car.That story doesn't go into much detail except for the main point that they met in an Internet chat room. That should send a message loud and clear to parents: the Internet is a dangerous place for kids.It's been proven time and again. Know what your children are doing, know what they're doing on-line. A computer monitoring program is about the only way to know what they are doing online at all times. July of 2004 was no different:

Men Held For Taking Teen Girl

Two men were being held at the Franklin County Jail in Ohio on Wednesday afternoon after being charged with transporting a 14-year-old girl from her Pike County home to Columbus, Ohio. Investigators later found e-mails and Internet chat room files on the girl's computer that shed light on the relationship and planned meeting between them, according to police.

Two charged with sex crimes against teen girl they met online

The alleged victim in the case is a 14-year-old girl from the West End of Monroe County.Police claim that both men met the girl in an Internet chat room last year when she was 13 years old.Each man arranged to meet the girl in person and established a relationship with her that eventually became sexual, police said.
In the previous news stories, there were a couple very important points made that should make parents think a bit more. "Investigators later found e-mails and Internet chat room files on the girl's computer " and "both men met the girl in an Internet chat room last year" The 13 year old girl was chatting with these men for a year with the parents not knowing? Enough said. Let's take a little gander at the events of August 2004:

Georgia man admits sexually exploiting Montana girl

A Georgia man talked a Montana girl he met through the Internet into disrobing before a web cam so could see her genitalia. The man and the juvenile girl, who was 13 years, met in March 2002 on-line through a computer game. During a chat session, the man got the girl to again take off her shirt. When he requested the girl to go further, she eventually showed him web cam images of her genitalia for 10 to 15 minutes before a relative of the girl's walked into the room.

Man Charged With Raping Girl He Met Over The Internet

An Alabama man is behind bars, charged with raping a young Louisville girl. Police say the man met the 12-year-old girl over the Internet, then drove to Louisville and took her to an area motel. When sexual predators travel to meet children they've met over the Internet, often times, they have police detectives waiting for them at the designated spot. But police say this time the alleged suspect had a 12-year-old victim waiting for him. Police say this should be a wake-up call for parents to do all they can to prevent Internet predators from reaching their children.
The first story is a bit unusual in that the man actually got the girl to undress for him in front of her web cam. Do your kids have a web cam? Apparently this shows how curious and trusting a 12-year old can be. Wouldn't you want to know just how curious they are getting and have some control over their curiosity? Parents can have that control. Here are a couple more headlines from September of 2004:

Missing girl found alive, Fircrest man charged with sex crimes, kidnap

In an upstairs bedroom, the 14-year-old girl curled in a fetal position, wearing nothing but a plaid skirt. In another bedroom draped in black plastic, officers found a bench, chains, sex toys and a video camera.Court documents allege Sadler picked up the girl in Clark County after meeting her in an Internet chat room.

Physician charged with sexual assault

A 31-year-old doctor faces a felony sexual assault charge involving a relationship with a 14-year-old Warwick girl he met in an Internet chat room.Police say the doctor arranged his first meeting with the girl at the Warwick Public Library. Police said a consensual sexual relationship began in early September last year and continued for several months.
Do you still think kids are safe on the Internet? You can't trust doctors or teachers or the person next door. These headlines all start sounding the same after awhile. That's because the bottom line is that they are. They all stem from an Internet meeting between a child and an adult and none of them have a very happy ending. Here some more from October 2004:

Man used Internet to lure girl, 14

A 32-year-old man moved from New York to New Holstein for a relationship with a 14-year-old girl he met on the Internet. He was arrested last week after he went to New Holstein High School, applied for a job and asked permission to take the girl to the homecoming dance.

British Man Charged With Assault

The 36-year-old man met his alleged victim, a 15-year-old Austin girl, through an Internet chat room in which they communicated for two and a half years.Austin Police alleges the man flew to the U.S. and drove from Denver to Austin in a rental car in July.He allegedly met his chat room victim at a park in her southwest Austin neighborhood and sexually assaulted her in the rental car. Court papers say there were several assaults during his visit. At the attorney general's office, they tout 53 undercover arrests in the last year and half."Those could have been 53 real victims," they said.But they also urge parents to check their kids' online activity."What types of information are the exchanging? Are they talking about music and movies or are they exchanging personal information about where they actually live, or where they actually go to school?" Boatright said.In the Austin sexual assault case, police say the 15-year-old girl had been Internet chatting with the suspect since she was 12.
These stories show the persistence of these online predators. The first one actually moved and applied for a job to be with his victim. The second one, talk about persistence, chatted for two and a half years before actually flying to the U.S. to meet his victim. They need to be stopped. There's more, let's see what happened in November 2004:

Online Predator Issues Warning

A man who is currently serving a six-year term for molesting a teenager he met over the Internet issued a warning for anyone whose child spends time on the Internet, saying there are plenty of others still out there who are just like him. "I was taking advantage of the fact that I was older and, you could say, wiser if you want," he said. "I took a confusing time in a young girl's life and made it even more confusing and more difficult."Eventually, he traveled to Metro Atlanta where his relationship with the teenager got physical. It ended when police found out."This is a dangerous thing, they're stealing the innocence of children and parents need to know this. They need to get current with what's going on the computer," said Peachtree City Police Chief.
I think that says enough. These predators are sick and your children just can't be trusted on the Internet alone or unmonitored. Now let's see what happened in December 2004:

Doctor admits sex with underage girl
'Last Fling' PC Accused of Sex Attacks
Man lures girl to car park via chat room

Those are only some of the headlines from December. Looks about the same as any other month, there was a Doctor, a Police Constable and an ordinary man. It doesn't matter what month it is, or what the occupation, or what part of the world, these people are out there and they are looking for unsuspecting innocent children to groom through an Internet chat room. Don't let that child be yours.The only other thing most of these stories have in common is the fact that they are news stories and that means that the predators were caught. What about the ones out there that weren't caught? How many missing children are there in the world? Would you want to read about your child in the news or would you want to find out what they are doing beforehand? The only way to know exactly what your children are doing while they are on the Internet is to get an Internet monitoring program. You have a right to know what they are doing.The headlines and stories are real news stories that happened in 2004. You can find all of the headlines and links to the original stories here. Some of the links may be dead links due to the fact that the Internet news sites don't keep the stories up indefinitely.You can find out more about computer monitoring programs here. Don't let your child become a news story.