An interesting development…

I was at work yesterday, messing around on the Web during some downtime (Really! I was waiting on more stuff to come in! LOLOL…) and ran across this, via the Associated Press…

LOS ANGELES — A Missouri woman was indicted Thursday for her alleged role in perpetrating a hoax on the online social network MySpace against a 13-year-old neighbor who committed suicide.

Lori Drew, 49, of suburban St. Louis, who allegedly helped create a MySpace account in the name of someone who didn’t exist to convince Megan Meier she was chatting with a 16-year-old boy named Josh Evans, was charged with conspiracy and fraudulently gaining access to someone else’s computer.

Megan hanged herself at home in October 2006, allegedly after receiving a dozen or more cruel messages, including one stating the world would be better off without her.

Salvador Hernandez, assistant agent in charge of the Los Angeles FBI office, called the case heart-rending.

“The Internet is a world unto itself. People must know how far they can go before they must stop. They exploited a young girl’s weaknesses,” Hernandez said. “Whether the defendant could have foreseen the results, she’s responsible for her actions.”

Drew was indicted by a federal grand jury on one count of conspiracy and three counts of accessing protected computers without authorization to get information used to inflict emotional distress on the girl.

I’d read and blogged about this before back when it all came to light, and thought it was amazing (and not in a good way, mind you) that (at the time) it seemed there was nothing that could be done to hold Megan Meier’s tormentors accountable for their actions. I know that ultimately it was her own decision to hang herself, but for cryin’ out loud, a grown woman drove her to it! And I almost mentioned the fact that she didn’t even express that much remorse for her actions, but there are some things even half-assed apologies won’t fix. Should be interesting to see what comes of this…

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