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Internet Safety

Claiborne Co. Runaways Caught at Chatter's House in La.

By Tearsa Smith
6 News Reporter

CLAIBORNE COUNTY (WATE) -- According to police, two 16-year-old cousins left Claiborne County Monday morning to meet a man they'd been chatting with online. But when they reached Southern Louisiana, police were waiting.

Sheriff's deputies in Southern Louisiana have the girls in custody Monday night. Their mothers' Internet investigating helped police find where they were headed.

Like most teens, 16-year-old cousins Jenny and Joanne Parker used Internet chat rooms to make friends. Early this summer, Jenny met a man who had the e-mail address "downunder_south at yahoo.com." He went by the name Daniel Boone.

"I don't know if Jenny has lied about her age to this boy," her mom, Janet Parker, said. "I do know that this boy is 18-years-old and is an adult. And I really don't think he has any business in a teen chat room talking to the little girls anyway."

The two chatters became friends. Janet said the man even told her daughter he loved her and wanted to
take care of her.

Just before 1:30 a.m. Monday, Jenny printed a map and stole her brother's car. She and Joanne drove to Sulpher, Louisiana where the man lives.

"My daughter has a daughter's permit. Jenny doesn't even have a permit," Joanne's mom, Sharon Parker said. "My daughter knows how to drive but she's never drove on the interstate until today."
The girls made it safely to the man's house. However, Louisiana authorities were waiting for them.
Investigating Officer Bill Davidson said, "One of the things anytime that we're dealing with things like this over the Internet. Most people that use e-mail services such as this never give accurate information in their profiles."

That's something that scares both mothers. They thought their honor students wouldn't do this. "No, never. Not in a million years. She's an honor student. I thought I knew my daughter but I don't."
The missing teen alert wasn't issued as an amber alert because the girls weren't abducted.

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