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Girl who posed as boy on Facebook arrested for stalking

Josh White

A 14-year-old Prince William County girl who posed as a boy on Facebook to strike up a relationship with another teenaged girl was arrested last week and charged with stalking, after her true identity was discovered and she refused to stop contacting the alleged victim.

Prince William County police said the girl created a fake profile on Facebook in early 2009 and, using the ruse of being a local boy, befriended a girl with whom she had mutual friends. The two carried on an online relationship and then began meeting in secret at a playground near the victim’s home in the Woodbridge area last summer.

Police said the alleged offender dressed and acted like a boy during their meetings. The victim, also now 14 years old, believed the other girl was a boy, police said, adding that the two may have had the beginnings of a physical relationship, including hugs and kisses.

Officer Erika Hernandez, a police spokeswoman, said the victim’s father learned of the clandestine meetings when his daughter sneaked out of the house. He later learned that the supposed “boyfriend” was actually a girl and informed his daughter.

“He told his daughter not to see her or have any contact with her,” Hernandez said. “And the victim, at that point, did not want to have any contact with her either. She followed his instructions.”

The girl posing as a boy continued to contact the victim, however, and the victim’s parents, monitoring her online account, became increasingly concerned. Police said the family contacted them in October, and a Prince William detective warned the suspect and her family not to have any further contact with the girl.

“The victim was not interested in having any contact with the suspect, but she continued to find ways to contact her, and that’s where the stalking comes in,” Hernandez said. The suspect allegedly created additional profiles, pretending again to be different boys, and tried contacting the victim repeatedly over recent months.

It is the unwanted contact, after a warning, that led to the stalking charge, police said. In addition, the girl was charged with sexual assault by ruse because she posed as a boy and struck up a relationship that had the beginnings of intimate contact.

Police did not release the names of the suspect or the victim because they are minors. The suspect was arrested Friday and is being held at the county’s Juvenile Detention Center pending a court hearing.

Hernandez said the case points to the dangers of meeting strangers online. Though this case involved young people looking to meet up, such encounters can result in kidnappings, violence or even murder. Police urge parents to keep a close eye on their children’s online activity.

-- Josh White

By Josh White  |  May 12, 2010; 11:25 AM ET
Categories:  Josh White , Juvenile Justice , Pr. William , Technology  
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Comments

Police said the alleged offender dressed and acted like a boy during their meetings. The victim, also now 14 years old, believed the other girl was a boy, police said, adding that the two may have had the beginnings of a physical relationship, including hugs and kisses....


what a story!

and yeah, this is white folks fault like EVERYTHING else! reparations NOW, right blkisin ?

Posted by: mloaks | May 12, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

i think you got that backwards blkisin.

this is what happens when society doesn't allow people to be who they are.
this incident took place in Virginia, in Prince William county. In a state where you have the Attorney General telling Universities they CAN'T stop discrimination against gays.
In a state where same sex couples can not marry. In a state that doesn't recognise same sex marriages from other states.

It is precisely because of Virginia's anti-gay policies that GLBT youth are forced to conceal who they are, and end up involved in incidents like this.

If the alleged perp in this situation lived in a community that accepted her as she was, she wouldn't of had to do all this deception.

Posted by: MarilynManson | May 12, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

girls will be boys.

Posted by: steampunk | May 12, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Frankly the sex charge against the child is ridiculous. If this crime she is charged with were applied even-handedly, every boy who has lied to a girl about himself just to get her into bed would therefore be a perpetrator of sexual assault by ruse. And in this case, the two girls just kissed and hugged! Anyway, the "stalker" is a confused 14 year old who needs counseling, not a record as a sex offender. I hope she gets it and is treated more gently by "the system" than she is being treated here in this forum.

Posted by: mercredi | May 12, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

wow what a story. guess they'll blame this on rap and hip hop as well huh?

Posted by: wisedecision08 | May 12, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

I want to know how the victim's father realized the "boyfriend" was a girl? That seems like a pretty big hole in this odd story.

It's fine to be gay, but you can't use it as a ruse to fool people who aren't. This kid does need some counselling, like mercredi said. A sex offender charge might make her parents realize that.

Posted by: akchild | May 12, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

@akchild Well there's a difference between being gay and being transgendered. If the girl thinks of herself as a boy, wants to be a boy, wants society to accept her as a boy...does that make it a ruse if she poses as a boy to another girl? I simply don't know the answer to that. Reminds me of the movie "Boys Don't Cry."

Posted by: mercredi | May 12, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

How do we know that this your girl didn't REALLY know that she was dating another girl?!!? Maybe she did....maybe she likes girls, provided they look and seem like they are boys (except for the obvious accoutrements). And what is to say that her father didn't "discover" that his daughter like girls and, in a fit of "Christian" rage, forbade the two of them to meet again for fear of his daughter's damnation to hell for this "sin." And what is to say that the daughter didn't continue to have clandestine Internet meetings with this "boy" at the girl’s bequest. So, the parents do covert investigations, find out that their daughter is still seeing this "boy" and, because they can’t stop the young love, accuse the “boy” of stalking, rather than admitting that their daughter is a lesbian and letting her be who she is.....to the lions with ALL these supposed "Christians"!!!!

Posted by: jsabol | May 12, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

*adding that the two may have had the beginnings of a physical relationship, including hugs and kisses*

at 14...wth. Kids are growing up faster and faster! Sounds like the victims parent need to keep monitoring their daughter and the 'stalker' needs some serious counseling (and her parents too).

Posted by: Gtown10 | May 12, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

"And what is to say..."

And what is to say that none of what you followed w/ may be true.

13-14 yr olds can be stupid and vindictive. Maybe the victim was unpopular and the suspect was playing a cruel joke? We may never know.

If the victim requested that the suspect stop contacting her, and the suspect didn't, I can see the stalking charge. The sexual assault charge is a stretch.

Posted by: BEEPEE | May 12, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

We have no idea why the stalker pretended she was a boy, so why bother with the pointless speculation?

The point that both the homophobes AND the liberals seem to be missing is that this girl was STALKING another. There is absolutely nothing ok about not taking "no" for an answer, and THAT is the sole reason the girl was arrested.

Posted by: Orsalia | May 12, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

We have no idea why the stalker pretended she was a boy, so why bother with the pointless speculation?

The point that both the homophobes AND the liberals seem to be missing is that this girl was STALKING another. There is absolutely nothing ok about not taking "no" for an answer, and THAT is the sole reason the girl was arrested.

Posted by: Orsalia | May 12, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't take the police version, or the "victim's" version, at face value. The only people who can really disguise their sexuality are characters in Shakespeare comedies. I say the "victim" was willing and just told her parents she was shocked - shocked! - to learn her boyfriend was a girl. We'll see when the facts come out, but you heard it here first.

Posted by: pundito | May 12, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I'm confused. Did the stalker and victim know each other before the stalker took on a boy's persona? If so, that must have been some costume!

Posted by: dcheretic1 | May 12, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

@dcheretic1: the article says the two girls had mutual friends. That could mean anything, really.

By the way, NBC is reporting that the stalker was 12 while her victim was 13 when the crimes occurred last year. I don't know that it changes things at all, but if true, it adds new context to the story. Here's the link: http://tinyurl.com/2d4jxbv

Posted by: mercredi | May 12, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I feel bad for kids now days. The internet generation is exposed to things we couldn't even dream of when we were kids. Finding someone with morals is going to be an increasingly hard thing to do when they look to settle down. I don't envy them at all. These kids are too young to know what they are. The mass media is indoctrinating our kid’s right before our eyes.

Posted by: osheehan1 | May 12, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

It's not just young kids doing this kind of stuff. There's a middle aged woman who does this stuff all over MD. She'll make up all kind of screen names and email and im people to get information on them, then put them on a blog of hers. www.marylandersover35.com

Posted by: lullul52 | May 12, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

How creepy. It's even more disturbing that a kid did something like this. What kind of upbringing did this child have?

Posted by: brandip_77 | May 12, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

On what basis do you conclude the teen was "pretending" to be a boy? How do you know the teen wasn't transgender? Everyone should watch Boys Don't Cry. I don't know the facts of this situation, of course, but it sounds to me like the youth was transgender. It cannot be an easy life, and kids in particular can be so cruel.

Posted by: nunca_mas_ | May 12, 2010 7:26 PM | Report abuse

This is why parents should not let their kids have FB accounts. 14 is way too young. I have no sympathy for the stalker. She is abusive and it doesn't matter that she's a girl. Girls can be criminals.

Posted by: happytortuga | May 12, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

@nunca_mas_: Exactly my point. We don't know all the facts of this case, but if the child is truly transgendered then that changes things. I also think it needs stressing that both these girls are children at an age when kids are often not the best judges of what they should or should not do. I'd invite those being judgmental to think back to seventh or eighth grade and the kind of emotional turmoil that could result from a crush--then consider what it would be like to be gay or transgendered and to have a heavy crush like that. A child being stupid and "stalking" another kid (whom she has apparently kissed and hugged) is not such an unbelievable thing.

Posted by: mercredi | May 13, 2010 7:50 AM | Report abuse

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