Many people play online video games to pass the time and meet friends. However, children need to be aware of the dangers in this. While many kids are lonely and desire interaction with others, they need to be taught to be careful when chatting online. They may think they are communicating with people their own age when they are actually talking to adults who want to engage in sex with them.
This is what happened to a child in Texas. A chiropractor in Baltimore communicated with the child through an online video game. He then tried to lure the child by traveling to Texas in May and June. The 37-year-old man was arrested in Stafford, Texas on July 6.
The man has been charged with sexual assault. He was booked into Fort Bend County Jail on two second-degree felony warrants. A $100,000 bond has been posted for each charge. The man is scheduled to appear in court on August 15.
Adults often use online games to make contact with children. They will then travel to meet the minor and lure them in to have sex with them. Parents are advised to monitor their children’s online and video game activity closely.
Even on websites geared toward children, adults may lurk, looking for victims. It is estimated that there are approximately a half million child predators online every day. While a child of any age can be manipulated by adults, most are between the ages of 12 and 15. Close to 90% of sexual advances happen in chat rooms or via instant messaging. Predators will often ask children to send sexually explicit photos of themselves. In just 4% of cases, adults will act aggressively, demanding to meet the child in person or talk with them over the phone.
Children often aren’t aware that they are being groomed, though. They may assume the person they are communicating with is their age, since the adult is likely using fake profile pictures. The adult will try to secure the child’s trust by pretending to share similar interests and giving them compliments. They may also offer gifts to the child.
Once trust is established, the conversation will turn toward sex. The adult may request that the child send them explicit photos or videos of themselves. In extreme cases, the groomer will meet with the child in person, traveling from many states away for a meeting.
Communicating online with someone may seem safer than meeting up in person, but there are still dangers online. Social media, online chats, and gaming platforms allow people to meet friends, but do you really know who you’re talking to?
If you have been accused of child porn crimes, seek legal help from a Columbia sex crimes lawyer from The Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. Count on us to protect your rights and freedom. Schedule a free consultation by calling (410) 774-5987 or filling out the online form. We have two offices to serve you.
7310 Ritchie Highway, Suite 910
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
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10440 Little Patuxent Parkway,
Columbia, MD 21044