(VitalNews.org) – In September, an 11-year-old girl was kidnapped from her home in Wayne, New Jersey, by a man from Delaware who met the girl while playing an online video game called Roblox.
Darius Matylewich, 27, from Bear, Delaware, now faces kidnapping and child endangerment charges after driving 140 miles from his hometown to Wayne, New Jersey, where he kidnapped the young girl he met while playing the video game Roblox. As reported by News 12 New York, according to the office of the Passaic County Prosecutor, Matylewich took the girl from her New Jersey residence without the knowledge or consent of her parents.
According to a press release from the Passaic County Prosecutor, authorities were notified by her family the same day that the girl went missing The case is a chilling reminder to parents that their children could be talking to anyone while using the internet and that predators use all sorts of means to communicate with minors.
A former special agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) commented on the case and reminded people that “it’s actually pretty easy” for a minor and an adult to talk on “almost any platform.” The former agent, Richard Frankel, added that even the security “protocols and preferences… based upon age-appropriate use” don’t help very much because such settings can be altered by the user.
Matylewich met the girl through Roblox, according to reports, which is a multiplayer game with a policy of open communication between players. The popular game is free to play and attracts a younger audience.
The game company issued a public statement about the case and even offered to assist authorities in their investigation. In the statement, Roblox said that they “work tirelessly to prevent grooming” and employ “a team of thousands of moderators” to “enforce” strict community standards on their platform.
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