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By Ariel Sabar and Ariel Sabar,SUN STAFF | December 12, 2002
A maintenance help-desk employee at the Naval Academy has been charged with possessing child pornography and posing as a 12-year-old on the Internet to solicit photographs of nude children, state prosecutors said yesterday. David N. Sprachner, 44, of Glen Burnie apologized at a bail hearing in Annapolis yesterday for what he said was a "stupid, sick mistake." But his request to be set free until trial was rejected by District Judge Vincent A. Mulieri after prosecutors warned that Sprachner shares a small apartment with a couple and their four children.
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NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel | April 22, 2007
An Edgewater teenager who infiltrated Army computers and was part of a virtual hacking group that charged $1.4 million on others' credit cards in 2003 has pleaded guilty to 11 criminal counts. William Matthew Byrum, who was 16 when he learned hacking how-tos in chat rooms, pleaded guilty Friday in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to one count of illegally accessing a computer and 10 counts of fraudulently using stolen personal information to spend between $3,000 and $4,000 on a PlayStation, T-shirts and more.
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NEWS
By Michael James and Michael James,SUN STAFF | December 8, 1999
In a case described by a prosecutor as "every parent's worst nightmare," a New York man was accused yesterday of raping a judge's 14-year-old daughter after using Internet chat rooms to lure her to a motel.Catalin Buculei, 40, could become the first alleged Internet stalker to face life in prison under a rarely used federal statute that targets child pornographers who cross state lines. Prosecutors say he filmed part of the encounter."This is a story about the dark side of the Internet," said federal prosecutor Andrew C. White in opening statements of the trial in U.S. District Court in Baltimore yesterday.
NEWS
By Cassandra A. Fortin and Cassandra A. Fortin,special to the sun | October 22, 2006
Amber Thompson has her Internet routine down pat. She logs on to her Web page and checks to see whether she has received any new comments about the design or content of her page. Next, she scrolls down to a slide show she created for her brother, who is serving in Iraq, and clicks on the top photo to start the show. "This is how I communicate with my brother and my friends," said the 15-year-old Havre de Grace High School sophomore. "It's a great way to share things with people you are close to."
NEWS
By Michael James and Michael James,Sun Staff Writer | August 30, 1995
A Florida man is accused of using an on-line computer service to lure a 15-year-old Maryland girl to Orlando, where she was raped before she used the same computer to get help and have him arrested, investigators said.The girl, who police would only say is from a small town in northwestern Maryland, met the man through a "chat room" on the Prodigy on-line computer service, sheriff's officials in Orange County, Fla., said.The man persuaded the girl to run away from her parents and provided her with a plane ticket to Orlando, said sheriff's spokesman Steve Jones.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel | April 22, 2007
An Edgewater teenager who infiltrated Army computers and was part of a virtual hacking group that charged $1.4 million on others' credit cards in 2003 has pleaded guilty to 11 criminal counts. William Matthew Byrum, who was 16 when he learned hacking how-tos in chat rooms, pleaded guilty Friday in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to one count of illegally accessing a computer and 10 counts of fraudulently using stolen personal information to spend between $3,000 and $4,000 on a PlayStation, T-shirts and more.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rob Hiaasen and Rob Hiaasen,Sun Staff; Cox News Service | October 4, 1999
Dear Gerald, Thanks for your recent message. I understand you have just learned to use e-mail. Congratulations! Don't be embarrassed; you're not the last person (or father-in-law) in the world to e-mail. My mother hasn't learned. She likes to hear my voice over the phone and actually writes me letters with paragraphs and punctuation. Nutty gal. You'll probably now venture into America Online chat rooms and find yourself talking to bright, witty human beings in faraway exotic places such as Louisiana and Cincinnati.
NEWS
By George F. WilL | January 24, 2000
CALVERTON, Md. -- To visit a crime scene, turn on your computer. Log on to a list of "bulletin boards" or real-time chat rooms, which come and go rapidly. Look for names like "Ilovemuchyoungerf" ("f" stands for females) or "vryvryvrybrlylegal" or "Moms'nsons" or "xyxoxuxnxgxdicks" (read that without the x's) or a title containing the word "asparagus," which refers to a young boy's penis. The Internet, like the telephone and automobile before it, has created new possibilities for crime.
NEWS
By James M. Coram and James M. Coram,SUN STAFF | November 5, 1996
Thousands of Americans are role-playing secret sexual fantasies with strangers on the Internet every day -- including fantasies so dark and lurid they would scarcely have dared confess them to a close friend or psychotherapist a few years ago.Like Sharon Lopatka -- the Hampstead woman who police say plotted her own torture and death in explicit e-mail conversations with the North Carolina man accused of killing her -- Internet users can seek electronic intimacy...
NEWS
By Cassandra A. Fortin and Cassandra A. Fortin,special to the sun | October 22, 2006
Amber Thompson has her Internet routine down pat. She logs on to her Web page and checks to see whether she has received any new comments about the design or content of her page. Next, she scrolls down to a slide show she created for her brother, who is serving in Iraq, and clicks on the top photo to start the show. "This is how I communicate with my brother and my friends," said the 15-year-old Havre de Grace High School sophomore. "It's a great way to share things with people you are close to."
NEWS
By JENNIFER SKALKA and JENNIFER SKALKA,SUN REPORTER | November 5, 2005
WASHINGTON -- In the latest twist in a continuing State House saga, a spokesman for a conservative Web site contended yesterday that The Washington Post violated the Electronic Communications Privacy Act by allowing a reporter to log on as the screen name MD4BUSH without the account owner's permission. Kristinn Taylor, a volunteer spokesman for freerepublic.com, said that a Post editor should have known the identity of MD4BUSH before publishing the paper's Feb. 9 story specifying that MD4BUSH had coaxed information out of Joseph F. Steffen Jr., the Republican operative who was revealed to be circulating rumors about the mayor of Baltimore.
NEWS
By John Woestendiek and John Woestendiek,SUN STAFF | December 30, 2004
When Sandy Rubini last heard from her brother, Randy, by e-mail on Dec. 16, he was planning to spend Christmas on the southern beaches of Thailand. When she heard the news - also by way of her computer - that a series of tsunamis had hit South Asia, killing thousands in some of the very places her brother mentioned he might visit, her heart sank and a feeling of helplessness set in. The only outlet was the machine in front of her. With tens of thousands...
NEWS
By Stephanie Hanes and Stephanie Hanes,SUN STAFF | October 29, 2004
A Severn man was indicted in federal court this week on child pornography charges that read like a parent's nightmare. Danny Lee Fleck, 58, of the 8200 block of Clearwater Court is accused of preying on young teens in Internet chat rooms and meeting at least one at an Anne Arundel County school, according to the indictment. Investigators also accused him of performing sex acts with the young girls and photographing them. The indictment in U.S. District Court in Baltimore comes at the end of a months-long investigation into Fleck, which started last October when screeners at Baltimore-Washington International Airport reportedly found explicit photographs of young girls in his carry-on luggage.
NEWS
By Lisa Goldberg and Lisa Goldberg,SUN STAFF | October 10, 2003
A former Dundalk high school teacher who sexually assaulted a 13-year-old girl he met on the Internet on New Year's Day was sentenced yesterday to four years in prison for a crime a Howard County judge called "every suburban parent's worst nightmare." As a teacher, Charles Levi Maxwell, an admitted sex addict, must have recognized that he was dealing with a minor, said Howard Circuit Judge Dennis M. Sweeney. But instead of calling off their meeting in Ellicott City, Maxwell decided to "proceed ahead and charge ahead," even making plans to meet her again a few days later, Sweeney said.
NEWS
By David L. Greene and David L. Greene,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | June 20, 2003
WASHINGTON - Mike wanted to know why Tom Ridge, the nation's homeland security secretary, always looks so serious. So he went online to ask him. "Are you a happy fellow?" Mike wrote, identifying himself by first name on a new online chat offered by the White House. "Oftentimes you look very stern in your pictures. Your job is very serious - but maybe you should open your next briefing with a joke or something." Ridge, seated at a keyboard in his department's headquarters, typed a reply.
NEWS
By Ariel Sabar and Ariel Sabar,SUN STAFF | December 12, 2002
A maintenance help-desk employee at the Naval Academy has been charged with possessing child pornography and posing as a 12-year-old on the Internet to solicit photographs of nude children, state prosecutors said yesterday. David N. Sprachner, 44, of Glen Burnie apologized at a bail hearing in Annapolis yesterday for what he said was a "stupid, sick mistake." But his request to be set free until trial was rejected by District Judge Vincent A. Mulieri after prosecutors warned that Sprachner shares a small apartment with a couple and their four children.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Frances G. Taylor and Frances G. Taylor,HARTFORD COURANT | January 8, 2001
It's that time of year, when thoughts turn to that perennial subject of dieting. For many, it's an issue that never really goes away, but returns in full force as remorse over holiday eating sets in. So what haven't you tried yet? The Atkins Diet? Weight Watchers? Jenny Craig? You could read more books about dieting. There's "Dieting for Dummies" by Jane Kirby; "Dieting With the Duchess: Secrets and Sensible Advice for a Great Body" by Sarah Ferguson; "The Turbo-Protein Diet: Stop Yo-Yo Dieting Forever" by Dieter Market; "The Skinny: What Every Skinny Woman Knows About Dieting and Won't Tell You" by Patricia Marx; and "When You Eat at the Refrigerator, Pull Up a Chair" by Geneen Roth, to name just a few. Or you could go online.
FEATURES
By Susan Reimer | January 26, 1997
IF YOU HAVE A teen-age boy and you are on the Internet, he is downloading pictures of naked women. So are his friends. So are the teen-age sons of your friends.If you are thinking, "Oh, no. Not my boy," give it up, because he is counting on that.If you are thinking that your son is logged on and researching a term paper and that is why you can't get through when you phone home, give it up, because he is counting on that, too.And if you are thinking that your son doesn't know how to find and download pictures of naked women because you don't even know how to do it, give that up, too, because he was born knowing how to figure this out. Or he has 17 friends who will teach him.Believing at first that the Internet was a vast educational resource, moms and dads are walking in on their junior hacker and getting their feelings hurt.
NEWS
By Gail Gibson and Gail Gibson,SUN STAFF | December 3, 2002
The sting was nothing new in the world of Internet policing: The 13-year-old cheerleader who found herself bombarded by sexually graphic e-mails and photographs from a 45-year-old Navy physicist turned out not to be a teen-ager at all, but an undercover FBI agent tracking online predators. It was the kind of case typically resolved with a speedy guilty plea in Maryland's federal courts. But Navy weapons designer George P. Chambers of La Plata became yesterday the first defendant accused of using the Internet to seduce an underage girl to take his case to a federal jury in Baltimore, arguing that his fantasy life was not a crime.
NEWS
By Julie Bykowicz and Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF | November 23, 2002
An Arnold man was being held last night on charges of soliciting sex with a minor in a sting that involved a Carroll County sheriff's deputy posing as a 13-year-old girl in an Internet chat room. Michael A. Kelly, 48, was arrested Thursday at his home in the 900 block of Rock Dove Court in Arnold, hours after police said he drove by the 7-Eleven in Westminster that was supposed to be the site of the meeting. The man did not stop at the store, police said. But instead of chasing him, the Maryland Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force - which already had the suspect's address - later searched his $260,000 Arnold home and arrested him there, police said.
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