St. Louis Public Radio News
5:58 pm
Mon August 31, 2009

Cyberbullying conviction thrown out

Los Angeles, CA – A judge has finalized his decision to throw out convictions of a Missouri mother for her role in a MySpace hoax directed at a 13-year-old neighbor girl who ended up committing suicide.

Los Angeles federal Judge George Wu said in his written ruling that the case was never a legal test of crimes involving "cyberbullying."

He said prosecutors brought charges against Lori Drew under the Federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Statute which does not involve cyberbullying.

Wu's ruling, filed late last week, cited vagueness of the statute and the chance that innocent users of the Internet could become subject to criminal charges if Drew's conviction was allowed to stand.

Drew was convicted of creating a false identity as a teenage boy on MySpace to befriend and then harshly criticize 13-year old Megan Meier.

The girl committed suicide shortly after receiving a message.