Lori Drew, whose MySpace hoax lead to the suicide of a 13-year-old girl, was convicted of three misdemeanors for unauthorized computer access. The federal jury deadlocked on the main charge, conspiracy, and rejected felony charges.
Prosecutors said Drew and two others created a fictitious 16-year-old boy on MySpace and sent flirtatious messages from him to teenage neighbor Megan Meier. The “boy” then dumped Megan in 2006, saying, “The world would be a better place without you.” Megan promptly hanged herself with a belt in her bedroom closet.
Prosecutors said Drew wanted to humiliate Megan for saying mean things about Drew’s teenage daughter. They said Drew knew Megan suffered from depression and was emotionally fragile.
Drew could face three years in prison and $300,000 in fines on the three misdemeanor counts.
It’s not clear what precedent this will set for people who use pseudonyms online.