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back to article SexSearch.com gets off on user's underage romp

Age is just a number, right? It is for hookup websites, according to a judge from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. SexSearch.com is a website that encourages its users to arrange sexual encounters using its services. Members create profiles that are populated by information provided in a …

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Anonymous Coward

Always check ID!

If you're going to use this type of service, always demand to see an ID, verify it, and then pocket it until after the assignation is completed. Better yet, take a picture of it and keep it: you never can tell if it is a fake, and the "victim" is a plant by the Moral Minority to trap just this type of "evil prevert". A photo of the ID and the "victim" together is going to be pretty good evidence of a setup.

He/she won't go for the picture thing? Walk away, quickly...

Oh, also, make hard copies of the profile and any chat sessions, as anything you say or type can and will be used against you...

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Another use for ID Cards

I say another ... perhaps the only use?

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Anonymous Coward

If he can't tell how can they?

If he can't tell, when he's got his Wii inside her XBox and he's 2mm from her face, then how can they be expected to tell? Any check they could do, he could do plus he could give her a gyno exam at the same time!

But then again 14 is the legal age across a lot of Europe for consented sex and in some places in the US and sex isn't such a big deal as religious zealots like to make out. No rape occurred here, only a pretend legal rape, invented for the purposes of protecting minors.

Find him guilty, give him a pretend legal sentence that fits the pretend crime, and save the 15 years for toddler butt rapists.

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Okay, that does it for him ...

... but what about her? Doesn't she qualify for some sort of entrapment or fraud or some kind of criminal complaint?

Sadly, no. She's so young that she has no valid thought processes. She bears no responsibility for her deeds because she's just a kid, and kids don't understand consequences ... unless they kill someone or commit some kind of violent act.

As long as it's just a horny 14-year old involved in collecting older men's prison sentences for their scrapbook, it's all the guy's fault, and he alone bears the punishment. She could go back online and trap another guy, tomorrow, with no risk to herself, as her previous behavior isn't admissible in court. Amazing.

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Ahem... Fake ID

I somehow suspect that the same people who would fake their age on-line might also find that the Internet is a great place to buy fake ID.

And I suspect that the same judge that dismissed this claim would also not allow fake ID as a defense. You, the alleged pedophile, are supposed to be able to know that your lover is underage, regardless of what he or she might tell you.

Really I suspect that sooner or later the dating and sex sites will either get their asses sued off, or will find that they need to make some effort to verify user information.

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Bronze badge

Or alternatively

Don't go for teenagers. Fortysomethings have a certain urgency about them that is just... well, you know.

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Identification

Maybe she was a Jedi and he really did ask to see her identification.

*Mind Trick* You do not need to see my identification.

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No substitute

"Of course, as the judge here pointed out, Doe did have ample opportunity to verify Roe's age before having sex with her."

Would he have sex with a fourteen-year-old if an internet site had not been involved? If the answer's yes then he got what he deserved because he's a paedophile. If the answer's no - and he substituted this site's information for the precautions one would normally take when meeting a new person - then he got what he deserved because he's not wise enough to be allowed out.

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It's a damn shame...

...that the kid lies, and the guy gets nailed for it. I mean, yeah, the guy should have been more careful, but really, where's the stiff punishment for her? Honestly, if someone claims to be of age, then someone who has sex with them ought to not be shafted for it. Clearly the minor was consenting -- so really, it's an issue where the minor and the government disagree on the issue of at what point a person can and should be able to legally consent. In essence, the girl broke the law first, by consenting when the law says she cannot legally do so. THROW HER ARSE IN JAIL!!

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Silver badge

So where were her parents???

So her parents let a 14 year old go off to meet a stranger that "she met on the internet" without bothering to check things out first?

And yet it's "the internet" that gets the blame...

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Anonymous Coward

I don't get it..

The cops had the house surrounded the first (only?) time they had gotten together? How did the cops know, unless it was entrapment?

Sorry if I missed something obvious.

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Bronze badge

I am surprised the court didn't cite Texas Precedent

There have been cases in Texas where guys have picked up underage girls at bars and be jailed for Statutory Rape. It doesn't matter that to be in there you have to be 21, that ID is checked at the door by people who's job it is to spot fake ID's, and any member of the staff can ask for your ID at any time.

He still should have known she was 14.

Do a web search for Veronica Lord sometime. With some girls you can not tell.

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Half a story

Who called the cops?

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Hmm.

The trouble with the law is that it doesn't allow for common sense. The girl lied about her age. A fourteen year old can look twenty one. It should just be written off as a non-event. Because she not only requested the encounter but advertised for it, then the obviously bears some responsibility. However the law is there to protect those that could be manipulated if there was a simple 'saw her on e-bay' defence. Without knowing more about it we can't say anything really, except that a post-pubescent girl is called a woman and a man wanting to have sex with a woman is called normal. That being said, teenagers are emotionally more vulnerable than 20 somethings and we should defend them against sexual predators, of course 20 somethings are more vulnerable than 30 somethings and we should protect them too.......

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Silver badge

This was a sting

"the two soon met up at her house and consummated their internet flirtation"

Then the cops busted in. Meaning that the cops were in on this all along. Meaning that the Law Enforcement Officers were basically pimping an underage girl to "trap" a guy who was expecting an 18-year old.

Something in this situation is not right, and it has nothing to do with the guy. He was honestly expecting an 18-year old, not a an underage child.

There are some disgusting jobs, but this is gross from the start. I wonder how they "recruited" her ?

"Hi girl, how old are you ?"

"um, 14."

"Great. You look good. Would you like to lie to older men to get them in your bed so we can jail them afterwards ?"

"Can I get shagged first ?"

"Sure honey."

"Do I have to tell my parents ?"

"Course not."

"Deal !"

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More info

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20070829-but-her-profile-said-she-was-18-jail-cell-judge-rules.html

They met, had sex, went their separate ways. It was a month later before the police went to his house and arrested him (probably because she told someone what happened?)

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Anonymous Coward

Anyone for Chips?

Clearly she set out to stitch this poor guy up. The facts speak for themselves! Bugger ID cards, why don't we just chip anyone under 18... and levy fines, community service and military boot camp for any offenders.. I wonder how much the Judge got as a back hander from the website?

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Anonymous Coward

Robert Grant

All of this would somewhat be mitigated if he'd just got to know a girl and done things in the more usual manner. Random sex-first encounters are - I think - always going to be a mistake, even though the consequences aren't as immediately obvious or tangible as in this case.

Just thought I'd add "modern thinking on sex" to the ever-growing list of things to blame (man, website, girl, parents...) :)

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Easy to fix

If a 14 year old girl gets shagged because she advertised herself then she's the guilty one. Its a total no brainer.

Its called entrapment.

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Anonymous Coward

The real news...

...is that one of those sex search sites actually *worked*. Who'd have thought?

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But ow can it be his fault...?

If the website aren't to blame then surely the girl is to blame for misrepresenting her age when she signed up.

Isn't the definition of entrapment the causation of a criminal offence by taking action without which the perpetrator would never had cause or motivation to commit said offence?

If she'd said she was fourteen and a slapper then he'd never had even clicked.

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Its not illegal if....

you meet them in a nightclub / they say they are 18 \ your too drunk

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Anonymous Coward

In the days of the Old Testament...

The Girl would be punished just as much as the guy.

How is it we end up giving favor to the girl?

How do we even know this wasn't engineered to be a trap?

Seems awfully suspicious.

Who gives a flying rip about the web site... the Internet is full of liars... well duh!

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Anonymous Coward

Buggs Away

Ha ha ha this is America - crazy - dangerous - ugly and corrupt - from a native who knows - Do not fuck with the man unless you are a closet hiding born-again bathroom boning buttf---er ("I'm not gay!" says Sen. Craig) or a Manster molesting underage male Capital Hill interns while passing laws that punish consenting adults - then by all means - shag it on. Only thing that could be better would be for photos to pop up of the Decider sucking one off from his Skull and Bones days - Surely there are some Reg photoshop boffins who could make this happen - Jaysus, look at him take that one down

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Personal opinion and the law

To all the posters who - in one guise or another - blame the girl: The law states that having sex with a minor (and fourteen is definitely a minor) is illegal. It makes no allowance for who initiated the sex, for how old the child looked or how he/she was dressed or made up, for whether the child was a 'slapper' or for any other pathetic, socially irresponsible excuse the other party can dream up. The law is written the way it is because of the presumption that a minor is less responsible for his or her actions and less mature in his or her thinking and is therefore more vulnerable than an adult.

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missing the point

John A Blackley, you're missing the point. She said she was 18, on a sex site (where I certainly would have assumed ages were verified...) In the case of these people in Texas they were in bars where ages ARE supposed to be verified.

What "normal precautions" do you think people should take? Profile says 18. Check. "Are you 18?" "Sure baby." "Lets see your ID." *whips out a fake*. Do tell, how would you then check?

In short, this guy should clearly get off umm.. Again... Since he had good reason to think she was 18 (unless of course there's aspects of the case not mentioned and he did know she was 14.)

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I hate to say it but

What is really crazy is that in the US, you get 20 years for having consentual sex and you life is ruined, but if you kill them in some sort of "acceptablely caused rage" you only get 5-8 years and lots of time off for good behavior.

So, you have sex with them, kill them in some sort of weird way, have sex with them again (to hide the evidence) and you get of better than having a great mutual sexual experience.

It just blows my mind. :-(

en

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