N.J. man charged in Web-related sex case involving Columbia girl

October 21, 2004|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

Howard County police say they have charged a New Jersey man with four counts of sex offense after a 13-year-old Columbia girl the man met online told authorities that he engaged in sexual activity with her.

Andrew Patrick Price, 22, was arrested at his Hoboken, N.J., home recently after an investigation stemming from a June encounter with the girl in Columbia, police said.

The girl told police that she met a man on the Internet and agreed to meet him in Columbia, authorities said. The teenager told police that the man picked her up near her home about 1 a.m. June 19 and drove to a nearby location, where the two engaged in sexual acts, authorities said.

Two days later, the girl's parent discovered her online instant messages and called the police.

Police are urging parents to monitor their children's Internet activities and remind them not to give out personal information online, agree to meet someone in person or send photos of themselves without parental permission.

This was the first incident of its kind to be reported to Howard County authorities this year, said police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn.

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