Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Murder, they blogged

Is Lori Drew the Real Culprit?

Had the Drew girl engineered the Josh Evans hoax, the story would be sad and sordid enough. The case awaits trial, but the evidence suggests that a key figure in this outrage may have been a figure who should have been protecting the community and her family from this sort of venomous intrigue: Lori Drew, the other girl's mother.

The Drews and Meiers knew each other well. They'd vacationed together. The Drews knew that Megan Meier was a complex, troubled girland that she had been on antidepressants.

Lori Drew denied initial police reports that she set up the account with her daughter. Federal allegations say that she was instrumental to the hoax, but she blames her employee in her home-based direct-mail business, Ashley Grills, who admitted involvement but further implicated Lori Drews. Grills, meanwhile, was gravely affected by the unfortunate events: she attempted suicide, and was hospitalized.

All that was slow to come to light; the Drews were understandably quiet themselves, tending to funeral arrangements. Lori Drew allegedly warned another of Megan's peers, the girl across the street, to keep quiet about the hoax and her role in it. But that girl told her mother, and the horrified woman took the tale to school counselors.

The neighbor finally invited the Meiers to the school counseling center and filled them in on the truth behind the situation, and they approached the authorities. The FBI conducted an investigationquietly. The US attorney's office and the St. Charles County prosecutor would eventually decide that potential charges involving stalking and harassment didn't apply to this case and that it couldn't be successfully prosecuted. Eventually, federal prosecutors would determine that there could be a case in establishing that Lori Drew had defrauded MySpace. In May 2008 they subpoenaed the site. They filed charges of conspiracy in Los Angeles County, where MySpace's servers are located. Drew pled not guilty and awaits trial

Meanwhile, the Meiers took steps of their own against the Drewsand the online world has attacked the Drews as well.

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