14-year-old student identified behind fake internet profile account

Cutout Photo: Terk0102 / Wikipedia / CC BY-SA 4.0

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WACH)-- A Midlands high school student has been identified and charged in connection with a fake internet profile account.

A 14-year-old Richland Northeast High School student has been charged with multiple counts of unlawful communication, a misdemeanor offense.

The juvenile was taken into custody at approximately 4 p.m. Tuesday.

RCSD investigators discovered that the juvenile threatened students through the use of a fake profile account via internet capabilities. Significant leads from the community assisted investigators in the juvenile's identity.

The student used Google Hangouts to contact the students at Richland Northeast High School through a school-issued chrome book.

Investigators are currently following up on more information and additional charges may be forthcoming.

Sheriff Lott stated that the juvenile will later be released to a parent or guardian.

The student used google hangouts to contact the students at Richland Northeast High School through a school-issued chrome book.

Related Story: Midlands mother warns of social media predator targeting underage children

Below are a few internet safety tips from the Richland County Sheriff's Department:

What Children Need to Know about Internet Safety

• Do not give out personal information such as your address, telephone number, parents’ work address/telephone number, or the name and location of my school without my parents’ permission.

• Tell your parents right away if I come across any information that makes you feel uncomfortable.

• Never agree to get together with someone you “meet" online without first checking with your parents. If your parents agree to the meeting, Make sure that it is in a public place and bring your mother or father along.

• Never send a person your picture or anything else without first checking with your parents.

• Do not respond to any messages that are mean or in any way make you feel uncomfortable. If you do, tell your parents right away so that they can contact the service provider.

• Do not give out your Internet password to anyone (even your best friends) other than my parents.

• Check with your parents before downloading or installing software or doing anything that could possibly hurt your computer or jeopardize your family’s privacy.

What Parents Need to Know About Internet Safety

• Use filtering or parental control technologies. Block everything that isn’t pre-approved, rather than just filtering out the “bad” sites.

• Bookmark their favorite Web sites so they will not mistype them and end up at a “bad” site.

• Use kid-sized search engines.

• Limit their online time.

• Check with their teachers often for suggested Web sites and for recommendations for good resources online.

• Sit down with your children as often as possible and find out where they go online, what they like and ask or answer any questions.

• Tell them to get your permission before posting any content, including profiles and blogs, to a Web site or sending it via e-mail or IM.

• Make sure only pre-approved senders can send your child an IM.

• Use a pop-up blocker or toolbar, an antivirus program and a spyware remover.

• Make sure that your children understand what information can and can’t be shared online with anyone.

• Make sure they can’t share pictures online, or set up profiles or blogs or webcams without your okay.

• Google their name, screen names, address, and telephone numbers at least once a week. Many kids post nasty things about others.

Other Helpful Websites

Digital Safety: Staying Safe Online

The 4 R’s of the Internet

1. Recognize – deceptive ways

2. Refuse – to give personal info

3. Respond – assertively

4. Report – dangerous contact


1. Keep Your Profile Anonymous

2. Guard Personal Information

3. Make Your Username Generic

4. Don’t Open Email from Strangers

5. Don’t Post Your Picture. Your friends already know what you look like.

6. Stay Clear of Inappropriate Sites

7. Folks Aren’t Always Who They Say They Are

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