The online hacking and activist group Anonymous is claiming they found Amanda Todd's first tormentor, the person who lured her into exposing herself on a webcam. They say he is a 32-year-old Vancouver man who also posted on child pornography sites. And they've posted the alleged tormentor's name and address online. The man is already receiving threats from online vigilantes.
But what about Amanda's parents? Does knowing that the bully who started it all was an adult change the story for them? Now I'm wondering how much they knew -- and how much even Amanda knew. If they were on webcams, did she know all along that she was exposing herself to a 32-year-old man?
Obviously after that first shot of Amanda was taken and shared with everyone she knew, dozens of kids her own age took part in the bullying. But one person set it all in motion. And that person could end up going to prison for it.
If Amanda's parents had known he may have been an adult (and remember, we don't know for certain that Anonymous fingered the right guy), maybe the authorities would have pursued the first bully more aggressively. I wonder now, were they under the impression that Amanda's online bully was just another kid?
I feel for Amanda's parents. If anything, this shows that parents cannot handle this level of bullying alone. And it sure seems like Amanda and her parents were left on their own without nearly enough support. Whether or not Amanda's first attacker was an adult, I think police should have assumed he was and treated this as the serious criminal offense that it was.
Are you surprised that Amanda's first bully may have been an adult? Do you trust Anonymous' research?
Image via CBC News