A 49-year-old Missouri mother accused of using a fake MySpace persona to “torment, harass, humiliate and embarrass” a 13-year-old girl who hanged herself was indicted on Thursday on federal charges.
The LATimes article: L.A. files ‘cyber bully’ charges against Missouri mother in connection with girl’s suicide (pdf)
Invoking a criminal statute more commonly used to go after computer hackers or crooked government employees, federal prosecutors in Los Angeles on Thursday charged a Missouri mother with fraudulently creating a MySpace account and using it to “cyber-bully” a 13-year-old girl who later committed suicide.
[...] Local and federal authorities in Missouri initially looked into the circumstances surrounding Megan’s October 2006 death in Dardenne Prairie, an upper-middle-class enclave of about 7,400 people 35 miles northwest of St. Louis, but declined to file charges, saying they were unable to find a statute under which to pursue a criminal case.
O’Brien said attorneys in his office were aware of the case, saw a Los Angeles nexus because MySpace Inc. is a local company and began their own investigation with the assistance of prosecutors in Missouri and FBI agents in Los Angeles and Missouri.