Menu
Share
Share this story
Close X
 
Switch to Desktop Site

Guilty verdict in MySpace suicide case could chill Internet speech

Next Previous

Page 2 of 4

About these ads

Other legal experts agree.

"The statute was never intended to cover this kind of conduct," says Michael Scott, professor of law at Southwestern School of Law, Los Angeles. "Lori Drew did not do the key acts that the prosecution alleged, but rather a third party did, so it seems strange that the person who pulled the trigger is not prosecuted but the one standing next to her is."

"What Drew really did was harassment and the fact that she used the Internet was just kind of an accident," says Sheldon Rampton, research director for the Center for Media and Democracy in Madison, Wis. "A lot of people do things on the Internet that are not nice, but that doesn't mean they should all be criminalized."

Attention and outrage about the incident first surfaced in late 2007, nearly a year after the suicide in O'Fallon, Mo. On MySpace, Drew created a 16-year-old boy named "Josh Evans" who subsequently began to send messages to 13-year-old Megan Meier, who had recently ended her friendship with Drew's daughter, Sarah. Pretending to have just moved to Dardenne Prairie, a small town just a few miles south of O'Fallon, "Josh" befriended the 13-year-old and feigned romantic interest. Prosecutors allege that Drew wanted to learn about Megan and what had happened to the friendship with Sarah.

Next Previous

Page 2 of 4


Follow Stories Like This
Get the Monitor stories you care about delivered to your inbox.

Loading...