back to article Woman arrested for WoW love affair

An Australian woman is facing child abduction charges in the US after trying to bring her 17-year-old World of Warcraft boyfriend back to Oz. Tamara Broome, a 31-year-old university student, was arrested on June 26 after she flew from Adelaide to the boy's home in Greenville, North Carolina to pick up her internet beau. Broome …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Unreal

    Typical US, apparently you can be arrested for kidnapping when you aren't and havent been, in company with the person who has been supposedly kidnapped.

    Sounds very believable that this girl has been setup.

  2. Daniel Winstone

    Conspiracy to...

    Kidnap is a crime if it can be proven that she was going to take him back to Australia. As he's a minor it makes little difference if he was going of his own free will, as the law is written at least.

    Hopefully common sense will prevail and this won't even make it to court.

    As for being a 31 university student and a WoW player I find the combination very hard to believe!!!

  3. Rebecca Putman

    It's a stretch to charge her

    I'm guessing that they're using the North Carolina statutes at http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/EnactedLegislation/Statutes/HTML/ByArticle/Chapter_14/Article_10.html, which say in part:

    "§ 14‑41. Abduction of children.

    (a) Any person who, without legal justification or defense, abducts or induces any minor child who is at least four years younger than the person to leave any person, agency, or institution lawfully entitled to the child's custody, placement, or care shall be guilty of a Class F felony."

    Now, how are they going to say that the couple wasn't leaving "without legal justification"? Maybe his parents weren't happy about it, but these two were talking marriage. Had been talking for a year.

    I'd say the charges are a bit of a stretch, and Ms. Broome should sue for false imprisonment and defamation of character.

  4. Tim

    Crazy

    I would say, it is typical US to scream death and murder while 2 people are in love. Where he 1 year older, no-one would care. Now, she faces 2 years, simply because he is 17.

    But then, what can you expect from a country where (showing) sex is a bigger crime then (owning) guns.

  5. Steve Roper

    Re: Unreal

    Actually the charge is "attempting to abduct", not actual abduction. Without seeing all the details of the case, it's impossible to say who is trying to set up who. Either of the two could have lied about their respective ages, so the argument of who set up who is limited to pure speculation until the facts come out.

    What is interesting in this case is that it is now dealing with a FEMALE "paedophile" (albeit barely due to the boy's relatively advanced age). We hear all the time about MEN going after young girls (and sometimes boys) and these guys generally get put away for a sight more than two years, as well as being permanently on the sex-offender registry once they get out. It's easy to blame the boy and his family here since the alleged offender is a woman, and it will be interesting to see if there is any leniency granted in this case because of the alleged offender's sex, compared to the lengthy sentence a man would get in such a case.

  6. Martin Owens

    Very unreal

    Nice jibe about the soulbound items :-P

    What concerns me most is that It's not like this sort of thing doesn't go on all the time. my internet romance started when I was 17 (fortunately for her in the UK) it's just silly.

  7. Sergei Poskriakov

    That's because...

    ... she's obviously a very dangerous terrorist from the Eastern Kingdoms and as such must be stopped at all costs. She was surely going to fireball the entire North Carolina on a killing spree, after she had abducted and sacrificed her level 17 - pardon, 17-year-old boyfriend to get past a particularly nasty mob.

    P.S. Americans are nuts. Sounds much like Minority Report - without the science-fiction.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    17/31 spread

    I dont know... A mage with 17/31 would make her a fire mage with boosted arcane. That would make her a fire cracker.

    And for a warrior, 17/31 would give him a lot fury and stamina.

  9. Konstantinos

    I bet she was up for some ganking...

    Correct me if i am wrong, but the article doesnt mention races...

    Could that be a forbidden love of a troll and a gnome??? Who knows.... maybe the woman was up for some serious ganking / corpse camping after she had her fun with him ( anyone /spit??? )

    On the other hand, if he was a succesful adventurer of deadmines maybe she was amazed by the sheer amount of blues he had aquired with his twinked character from the mighty Lord of the fearsome Defias Brotherhood.

  10. Rose

    @ Daniel

    "As for being a 31 university student and a WoW player I find the combination very hard to believe!!!"

    As a 49-year-old Dofus player, I don't.

  11. harreh

    heh

    this is the kind of thing that makes me refuse to go to Amercia, always out for the easy buck doesn't matter who or how

  12. Luke Wells

    Another country to avoid

    Well if I ever do travel to the US, I certainly will make sure that no one under the age of 18 shows up to greet me. I could be arrested for kidnapping someone, without even seeing them (or even knowing they had gone there to meet me)

    I'm glad common sense is so rife in the US.....

  13. Bill Dyehouse

    I think Mr Modine plays WoW

    But I think [air fare] should have been rare, but I guess that all depends on the seating :)

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And?

    This is not uncommon. The age difference may be a little larger than most romances, but that is a trend that seems to be happening with a lot of online partners (my previous partner, who I met through IRC and had a long and physical relationship with) was 14 years my senior, my current partner is 5 years younger then me, and I met through WoW. To produce a long lasting long distance relationship such as these two have you need to display a maturity that a lot of (the younger) WoW players lack, although online interaction cannot be a substitute for physical interaction, nor would they truely know they are in love until they had spent some time together.

    It definatly sounds like a set up by the boys parents here, and I hope this woman gets all charges dropped against her and they get a decent shot at the relationship.

  15. Peter Jackson

    If they're only level 31 and 17...

    They can't have been playing WoW for that long, which suggests there may be more to this than meets the eye. Doesn't sound like a "long-term" relationship that's for sure.

  16. Andrii Degeler

    Very nice

    I don't believe she'll be jailed.

    Nice joke about "soulbound". =)

  17. Leigh Smith

    Steve Roper - check your definitions

    Paedophile - A person whose primary sexual attraction is toward prepubescent children

    Perhaps children mature more slowly in the US but a sincerely doubt a 17 year old boy would be considered prepubescent. There is no barely about it this woman is simply not a paedophile. There are perfectly adequate words available to describe this woman we don't need to dilute the meaning of another one just to illicit a negative emotion response in the reactionary American mentality.

  18. Andrii Degeler

    Re: Conspiracy to...

    'As for being a 31 university student and a WoW player I find the combination very hard to believe!!!'

    Why do you hard to believe in it?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Romeo and Juliet

    Can a 17 year old make their own decisions? If they can't, then how can you try them as an adult?

    Sad to see how creepy and dysfunctional the US is these days.

  20. Karim Bourouba

    @Rose

    I think Daniel was pointing out that she was a Uni student.

    With all the exams and lectures to attend, it would make it very hard for her to spend so much time in the game. Not to mention the monthly fee, how could she afford that on a student loan? Especially with all the essential stuff like going out, drinking, going out, buying takeaways, going out, paying the gas, going out, buying food, going out and occaisionally buying a book for Uni....

  21. Andrii Degeler

    Title

    They aren't level 31 and 17. It was about their age!

  22. Rob

    @Karim

    I agree.... but (this one will be below the belt) you've seen her picture and she plays WoW, I don't think the "going out" bit of your comments really applies that much.

    (Sorry harsh comment, how many more of you were thinking it though)

    It could be a setup, if they play on a PvP server it could be a revenge thing, she might have ganked him too many times.

  23. Daniel Buckley

    @Andrii

    I think they were just making jokes

  24. John

    Mage nerf

    Lets hope Blizz dont' read this, they have been nerfing mages the last two years, we'll log in and find ourselves banged up in Stockades if they do see this.

    Seriously though, its one of those cases that while technically is illeagal, surely common sense should prevail and draw some logical conclusions about the relationship.

    Anyways, next time she sets foot in the US (if ever) she should spec frost, heaps more survivable and she just may escape, ice barrier, frost nova, blink, run, ice block, wait, blink, frost nova, and she should be about back on the plane waving. her 17/31 arcane fire obviously isn't strong enough to tackle the US mobs (probably elite) they seem to excel at casting shadow word pain everywhere :P

  25. John Kirkham

    It was a setup.

    I read in the Adelaide Advertiser this morning claiming that, her housemate said her airfare was in fact paid for by the kids parents and she was on the phone to them every day - she claims she heard them arranging it for quite a while.

    So, work that one out.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Actually...

    A 17/31 warrior has no Protection...

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously, guys...

    With the 17/31 issue, obviously she was powerlevelling him.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Odd

    The age of consent in NC is 16.. so it would have been legal for her to go there and have sex with him.. as long as she doesn't take him back to her place.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Unreal

    No, Warcraft.

  30. H2Nick

    He's old enough to join the US army

    From www.goarmy.com

    GENERAL QUALIFICATIONS

    * U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien

    * 17-41 years old

    * Healthy and in good physical condition

    * In good moral standing

    * High school or Equivalent Education

    Some positions may have additional qualifications

  31. Yorick

    Age of consent

    Hmm. Abduction charges aside, the age of consent in NC is 16; and for Australians abroad, it's also 16. However, in many Australian territories, if you are the guardian / caretaker, age of consent is 18. At a 31/17 spread, the 31 is definitely the caretaker, wimpy mage armor notwithstanding.

    Should've ground another level - er, year - for the boy.

  32. Chris Pasiuk

    re: Age of consent

    You have to read the fine print here. The age of consent may be 16 but the statue for abduction dictates that the other party must not be older than 4 years. If she was say 21, then there wouldn't be an issue. But 31 is 14 years older making that a class-F felony. Age of consent laws in many states have that age-difference clause attached to it to prevent old farts from having their way with a consenting 17yo tart. Besides, this isn't a statutory rape case where consent is in question, but an attempted kidnapping case.

    Stupid? Hell yeah for both sides--her for shooting so low on the age, the state for the repressive laws, and the parents for setting her up in the first place--or not paying enough attention to the kid to know what he's doing online.

  33. Rebecca Corder

    Re: Age of consent

    I agree with you Chris, parents need to pay attention to what their children are doing online. And if they did set her up, it may have been to keep him (the kid) from ever doing it again. I doubt that we will ever know the full story because all we will ever know is what the police decide to release and what her lawyer says to the media (that she didn't do it), and who do we believe?

    And yes, the US has oppressive laws, and some of them are stupid, but people just need to realize that someone that you meet online may not be the beautiful woman or handsome man who's picture they sent you.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    how bizarre

    Friends of mine met when he was 32 and she was 17.

    They have been married for 8 years (together for 10), have two beautiful children and are very happy.

    Bloody perverts.

  35. fred gorman

    age of conset

    North Carolina

    The age of consent in North Carolina in general is 16, though no school faculty member can have any sexual activity with any student more than 4 years their junior except when married to the person {§14‑27.7}. Any sexual intercourse with a 13-15 year old is prohibited unless the defendant is less than 6 years older than the victim except when married to the person {§14‑27.2, 14‑27.4 & 14‑27.7A}.

    no harm no foul, though i would be concerned if a 31 year old was interested sexually and romantically with my 17 year old.

    and I am 43 and play WoW.

  36. Bear

    internment

    This appears to be progress. This time they have caught an Australian from Adelaide in the US, possibly breaking the law. They even had the courtesy to charge her this time.

    It is just certain that even if she were set up, there is no way that the Australian Government will do anything about it.

  37. Luke Wells

    ...but attempted kidnap?

    Ignoring all the "age of consent" stuff, I sitll don't see where you get attempted kidnap from?

    Surely attempted kidnap means.... attempting to kidnap someone?

    Surely you can't attempt to kidnap someone you are no way near at the time?

    Surely there would have to be some proof that she was at least going to try kidnap him? i.e. take him away without his consent (or his parents consent) ?

    so shes on her way over to the US from Australia .... and hes at the airport going to get a flight the Australia......... hmmmm does anyone else see a problem with that? She turns up at his house and he turns up at her house in oposite countries.... ah yes ...... definatly kidnap.... thow away the key!

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Age of consent

    Do you people commenting US laws understand that this has nothing to do with a person being old enough to decide for himself? This is all about morality. And a conservative one at that.

    As long as you are married, you can do whatever you like - even if you are sixty and your spouse is a fourteen year old. New Hampshire for example sets a girl's minimum age for marriage at 13, while Kansas until last year didn't even have a minimum age.

    In 2005 a pregnant 14-year-old went to see her 22-year-old boyfriend in Kansas and get married. The man was arrested because he had sex with a minor he wasn't married to. Had they been, he would have walked free.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sad

    So, this lady is being arrested for something she didn't do.

    And god knows if that lvl17... pardon, 17-year-old, lied about his true age to her.

    I've seen a similar thing happen in another RPG community I'm constantly on. The worse thing is that the victim here is a friend I met in the game. He got entangled with a minor because, guess what? The minor lied about her age. And not only that, she approached him and flirted with him first. We didn't know her true age until two years later, by then he has already grown intimate to her and well, separating them has caused him to go a little mental and totally emo.

    It's just not fair, isn't it?

  40. Daniel Ballado-Torres

    Stupid Laws...

    This reminds me of a case some years ago where some girl was in a MUD but it seemed we took the "roleplay" stuff as a pretext for netsexing on the place. Lame, I thought, I consider netsex the online version of losers doing phone-sex.

    Thing is, someone she knew told me to stay off because she was "only 14". Huh? So it seems like even *roleplay* is considered immoral? Most players do not even give their RL names in these games, come on! I remember that on some MUD my "father" was actually like 6 years younger than me in RL.

    As for large age gap relationships go ... I used to date women 5+ my age back when I was 18. Then again, I was over the "legal age" ;)

  41. Daniel

    Women

    I'm 29 and an EVE Online player. I wish there were more women who play it :( no matter what there age.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Disappointing

    What, no gag about grinding?

  43. JP Bonello

    Eve

    Man this story made me laugh so hard... Particularly all the comments spawning off it.

    (WoW equipment could not be seized by authorities, as it is soulbound.)

    is my favourite note. These things happen, if you wanna avoid them, dont go pimping 17 year olds if your over the age of 23 odd... simple as!

  44. Mark

    Why did she need the air fare?

    Should've levelled up to get a flying mount!

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ..can't help myself....

    Did you know that the District Attorney in this case is in showbusiness?

    ...all together now...

    Ta-ma-ra-Broome's D.A...

    ..I am so sorry..

  46. Lloyd

    Whoah

    Who knew the graphics in WOW were that good? That Orc pictured at the top looks almost lifelike.

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Crazy

    In one year he will be fully in control of his actions, regardless of the orcs age. Let's be honest... anyone in the position of pulling online is unlikely to do any better, let them be.

  48. Brendan Weir

    Aiding and abetting

    If the parents of the 17 y.o. stumped up the cash for the air fare, will they be charged with aiding and abetting an attempted kidnapping? Does the charge even make sense if the lad has consented and his legal guardians appear to have granted consent by providing financial assistance?

    Of course if she is found guilty, she just needs to donate all her weapons and armour to Dubya's Great War On Terror and he will commute her sentence...

  49. Dam

    Thou Shalt Not .. go to the US

    BRB, posting this on my old guild's website :p

    Done, so, to the fun now.

    Why people still bother going to the US is beyong me tbh.

    Double U anyone? Fear for someone that bypasses laws and limitations to wiretap his fucking own citizens?

    One has to be really trying to fly to the stupid country of their own will...

  50. Mike Mattox

    Title

    Ah yes - you limeys and your hate for a place you wish you were.

    I'm from America, and I'm appaled by this, myself. So everyone who thinks everyone in America is like this, go fuck yourself.

    Oh, and I don't know where you people are learning all this stuff about the US and how "Evil" we are... But change the fucking channel. Our president may be a dumbass, but no one here likes him either.

    Oh - and you're welcome for saving your asses during World wars one and two. Oh and Happy 4th of July!!! (oh, yeah - you guys must've forgotten about that whole deal, too...)

    You guys are making France look like Mike Tyson on a 'roid rage.

  51. Zippy

    @Mike

    Mike,

    I am on your side my American cousin, and I'm English.

    Please don't be angry at the sheeple, they can't help it.

    It's years of "liberal" self-hate teaching by "trendy" sandle wearing teachers.

  52. Goldie

    I love to stay in U.S.A. ... but never ever

    It all hangs more or less whether this used to be a sanctioned relationship or not. I would be really interested to learn how parents gave such generous OK in the beginning just to cry "foul" afterwards. It might be that the boy increased his "level" a bit, she was somewhat shy about hers, so their were assuiming the beloved son was going to date someone around their son's age. Maybe only after her arrival they solved the equaition "few years difference" means 14, and rang the bell.

    ************************

    My dear loved Mike,

    Unfortunately I have to disappoint you - being born, grown, and living in Europe, I prefer to continue that way. FYI, I've paid several visits to U.S.A. and ... am NOT interested to go there again. More than that - despite clear business benefits (up to 20-25% increase in my yearly income) if I go there, I am not interested to be treated as a criminal on the border just because a huge U.S. corporation is willing to pay for me. There are many other countries and/or corporations on that globe, you know.

    For obvious reasons I not going to be more intimate with you - waves of childish emotions are coming from your post, so will avoid you to be on the safe side!

    ************************

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Right, a 17-year-old boy is a "child".

    The whole idea that people under a certain fixed age must be treated as "children", without exception or common sense, is utterly ridiculous. For instance, at 17 a young man can join the US Armed Forces and go abroad to kill foreigners (or be killed by them). Although the minimum age for getting married in the USA is 18 without parental consent, you can marry a lot younger in many states if your parents agree. (The record seems to be 14 in Alabama). What these marriage laws acknowledge is the obvious truth that some people are adults at 14, while others are still childlike well into their 20s (or, sadly, all their lives). Alexander the Great and Frederick II were leading soldiers in war at 14, and when Philip of Macedon attacked Byzantium in 340 BC, he appointed Alexander, then aged 16, regent of Macedonia. And Juliet, in Shakespeare's play, is not quite 14 when she falls in love with Romeo. (OK, that one is fictional, but I have never heard anyone criticize the scenario as unrealistic). What we have today is a ridiculous combination of some special-interest groups plugging the rights of young people to be coddled and treated as moppets, and other groups who want them to be treated just like adults.

  54. Sergei Poskriakov

    Re: Our president may be a dumbass...

    @Mike's "Our president may be a dumbass, but no one here likes him either."

    Actually, since you people claim to live in a "democracy" and a "free country" and have "legally" elected the "dumbass" in question, I can't see what you're complaining about. Remember the old saying, "A nation only has the leader they deserve."

    And for the record: nobody's saying that *each and every* American is crazy. We only take exception to your way of life over there -- and yes we don't like it so we'll just stay away thank you very much.

  55. Rebecca Putman

    Hey, Mike?

    Thanks for showing these good people just how intelligent and mature we 'Muricans are. Sheesh.

    Everyone else: I apologize for my rude countryman's boorish behaviour.

  56. daniel Silver badge

    Re: Mike:

    I thought that the French (Lafayette amongst others) saved your asses from the Brits during your fight for independance, so, have a Happy 4th of July and take your half baked ideas and shove them into the ballot box where you should have voted against Bush rather than sitting on your arse complaining about him you ignorant pratt.

  57. iain

    Re: Our president may be a dumbass...

    not elected once but after 4 years of bushisms

    he gets elected AGAIN...

    bet if he's name was on the next ballad

    you'd vote for him a third time ...

    (he can only have too terms mike)

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Steve Roper - check your definitions

    The correct term is "ephebophile".

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ephebophile

    Now if somebody could also pass that definition on to the British media.......

  59. John A Blackley

    A little distressing

    Oh my! This certainly is an insight into anti-American feelings in (I presume) the UK.

    I've lived half of my life in the UK and half in the United States. I agree that there are many strange, unfair and contradictory things about life in the United States. Had I the power, I certainly would change many things about life here.

    But the level of vitriol in some of these posts? What's going on?

  60. Les Matthew

    No

    Wizards hat and robe for them then. ;)

  61. Alex

    Imperialism Vs. Nationalism

    @John A Blackley: "Oh my! This certainly is an insight into anti-American feelings in (I presume) the UK."

    What you're seeing here, sir, is Nationalism at it's worst. The "my country is better than you're country" is not only getting old, but is a dangerous opinion for so many to hold dear.

    That's how wars start, cities fall, and people die. I've had enough of that, personally.

    Personally, I thought the Reg readers by now understood that "news" means new and out of the ordinary. Cases like this don't get reported often, because they don't happen often. The US doesn't have a monopoly on miscarriage of justice. And the miscarriages are still being reported, which makes me relieved.

  62. Gregor Kronenberger

    oh won't someone ...

    Think of the children? That poor boy is completely devastated at this point. Oh the horror!!!

  63. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My son, too

    My son was recently engaged in a telephone / online relationship with a 25-year-old woman he met through WoW. He told her he was 19. How he pulled that one off, I'm not sure, because he won't even be 16 until later this month.

    We busted him by checking numbers on our cell phone statement. When we saw all the calls to a number neither of us knew, we called it. That clearly never occurred to my son! It became clear when we spoke to the woman that the conversations were sexually explicit.

    The woman was horrified, we were horrified, my son was mortified.

    No one is being arrested, but needless to say, he no longer has any access to--or characters on--our WoW account anymore.

    I can't imagine what that boy's parents must have been thinking to help set this up!

    Oh, and by the way, most of us in America are no happier with that idiot W than any of you are. He did NOT win, but stole, his elections. So please don't hate on us.

  64. Andy Bright

    Don't understand the vitriol either

    When I left England to come live in the US about a decade ago, people had mixed views of Americans - but generally didn't hate them.

    I don't really understand what's changed. Surely most of what you dislike should be placed squarely at the feet of Tony Blair. Ok he seemed to be sharing and taking too many ideas from Chairman Dubbya - but he's the one that did it, not the Americans. No one forced him to invade Iraq for example, he made that decision all by himself.

    Those of us that live in the US have enough to worry about with the absurd re-election of Dubbya without having everyone back home hating us too.

    The good and bad of living here makes it about the same as the good and bad of living in Blighty. Six of one, half a dozen of the other.

    Both countries are inhabited with far too many nationalistic racists, who seem to have no regard for anyone outside their borders.

    Both countries re-elected dick premiers in spite of the draconian and somewhat illegal activities and bills they've been passing into something that loosely resembles law.

    The biggest failing of the US is that only 50% of those eligible to vote do so. I can't, I'm not a citizen and have no desire to be one.

    Other than that, and of course the fact that both countries appear to be exclusively represented by some sort of crazy elite that bare absolutely no resemblance to the normal population - I'd say living here was about the same as living there.

    So please stop blaming your average Register reader for the actions of these twats (Congress, Parliament and each country's leader) - they didn't do it, probably tried to stop it by voting appropriately, but even when they voted almost an entire new Congress it hasn't made a difference. Imagine voting out every member of Parliament, and then being faced with the same old shit when the new lot get in. Depressing doesn't even begin to describe it - but at least they did the right thing even if they were unable to prevent Chairman Dubbya from getting a second go at fucking up the world.

  65. Andrew Rhodes

    Inconsistancy

    So...

    Relationships of all kinds and levels have been happening online for over 20 years. From friend to spouse, they meet online people become close. And even longer, such relationships developed through the mail as pen pals, becoming more. Sometimes they worked out. Sometimes they didn't. And sometimes there were bad people who used these forms of communications for horrible reasons.

    Naturally, we'll see and hear plenty of massacre chasers and agenda seekers screaming about the evils of WoW as if the sole purpose of the game is to meet people online for the purpose of having pedophilia relationships. As if WoW is the only form of long distance communication that has been misused for this purpose (as MySpace always seems to be the only non-game online communication tool used for the same purpose).

    These two met online, were only ever friends online, and talked about a relationship. She was 30-31 and he 16-17.

    For whatever reason, she came to the US. He was already on his way to preparing to leave the US on the same day (or so I get from the multitudes of stories about this). Does this sound coordinated to anybody at all? Entrapment is smelled, and frankly, I agree.

    But wait! There's more! Oh my gosh! She's 31! He's 17! NC says that's a BAD thing! Oh my gosh! It must be attempted child abduction because they met online and that's the only reason people meet online is to molest kids! Oh my gosh!

    http://www.wwaytv3.com/high_school_coach_resigns_marries_teen/06/2007

    Wait. Somethings wrong here.

    Nothing could be done about a 40 year old teacher having a LIVE relationship with a 16 year old girl who was his student (which reportedly may have started when she was as young as 14) and they can get married. But a 31 year old woman who had an online (irregardless of where online) relationship, never met live, with a 17 year old boy and she's child molestor/abductor number 1?

    Welcome to the Human Species.

    Andrew Rhodes, Wilmington, NC, USA.

  66. Tim Porter

    Any reason for the photo?

    El Reg doesn't normally post photos of people mentioned in stories.

    I'm pretty sure you haven't done this in the past when people have been convicted of offences, rather than merely being charged; any reason why this story appears to be the exception to the rule?

  67. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You're wrong...

    You guys need to read the text again, it says he was missing on June 12 because he was trying to catch a plane to Adelaide. She got arrested on June 26. Only a difference of 14 days.

  68. Ben Lefroy

    @ Mike – I love it…

    When 'merkins get all hyped up!

    Stop being so childish about the cross-Atlantic debate, we are all friends here.

    Let's settle this in a mature and adult fashion.

    Arm wrestling anyone?

  69. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Who's to blame?

    Well laws are laws, they may be crappy by and large, but ignorance is no excuse, nor is breaking them because you don't agree with them.

    The boy? What did he do wrong?

    The woman? Innocent til proven guilty I'd say.

    The parents? They had a chance to deal with this appropriately (prevention or cure) and chose instead to do their best to persecute the woman. So for me, the blame lies with them entirely.

    Chad Smith

  70. Andy

    Ignoring the true problem here

    A 17 warrior/31 caster would make an inefficient group and risk wiping constantly.

    The most effective strategy for tank/caster pair is: he would need to hold aggro while she ranged the hell out of mobs. (It works like a charm for me, a level 49 paladin, and my most constant partner, a level 45 warlock.)

    In order for either of them to earn XP, they would need a zone with level 25 (average) mobs. Duskwood is the obvious choice, but even here, they'd run into significant issues. First of all, the mobs are grouped very closely and at his level, he would aggro the hell out of them so fiercely, young panthers and tigers would come charging up from Stranglethorn Vale just to see the n00bs get wiped.

    Secondly, she's not high enough to be "level skull" to Duskwood mobs, so she's pretty much on her own, trying to keep out of melee range while he aggroed the shit out of everything and stood rooted to one spot, urine running down his mail pantleg, too frozen to act.

    She would basically run 'round and freeze/arcane explosion everything in sight while he watched his XP bar climb. Of course, the fact he's on the team at all would nerf the XP she was working so hard to earn.

    I'm being facetious, of course.

    In a nutshell, imho, rape? No. Kidnap? Please. Sordid? Meh. Most of what you did in the privacy of your own home and, worse, the privacy of your own mind would make this look like Dark Moon Faire, I'd wager. Everything looks sordid under the microscope of the authorities and the media. Is she guilty? Well, if love is wrong, then I don't want to be right. (/taunt) Is she Orcen? Come on. I've seen worse looking people play this game Let's see how good you look after a daylong flight and hours-long train ride in bloody North Carolina, evading the authorities and nosy seatmates the entire time. Cut the poor sheila a break. I think the posters who suggest the authorities (and parents!) overreacted when they heard this "love affair" was originally conducted online have hit closest to the truth. As for American laws and the ridiculous government, you'd find that many of us Americans realize how ridiculous our "leaders" sometimes can be, too.

    This story ignores the most important question, though: Were they Horde or Alliance? And were they flagged pvp, if they were playing on a "normal" server? Alliance for the win! Woot!

  71. Jason Sullivan

    17 yr olds in the military

    Just a minor point, yes, a 17 year old can join the military, but they need parental consent to do so. So it's not really a valid argument point.

    Doesn't make this whole situation any less assinine, just means it's not a valid argument in it.

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