Who is Kristen Helms? Kristen Helms was a 14 year old star student and athlete, who was seduced by a predator nearly twice her age who traveled from Texas to California to have sex with her.
Kristen Helms eventually revealed her secret to her mother. Danielle Helms recalls her daughter telling her that she didn't mean to fall for him emotionally and saying, "It's not your fault, mom."
And then one day, while her parents were at church, Kristen hanged herself.
Kristen's mother is determined to change the way predators operate online, while Child advocates have called Internet social networking sites the Sears Catalog for child predators.
The thousands of sex offenders who have been caught so far are offenders that have been using their own names, so one might ask, "Are there thousands more that are using aliases?" There are probably tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of predators on these sites using aliases or disguised identities.
Kristen is gone forever because she couldn't handle her shame, humiliation and feeling that she had failed her parents. Kristen's predator, on the other hand, Kiley Ryan Bowers, who was 27 at that time, was recently convicted of child molestation. He was sentenced to nine years in a federal prison plus six years of supervised release after completing his prison term. He will also be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. Somehow I just do not believe that Bowers has paid a high enough price for the consequences of his actions.
Attorneys general in all 50 states are now calling for effective age and identity verification and parental permission for minors to post profiles on social networking sites. This is not enough. Stiffer penaltiees for the sex offenders are required in order to deter their blatant use of the internet to stalk young teens like Kristen.
What is your opinion? Does the sentence fit the crime here? Should he have been charged with involuntary manslaughter or worse? You tell me....spout off.