10 year old victimized through Xbox
A ten year old Folsom boy, enticed by $20 worth of free Xbox Live credits, told his parents recently he had sent nude photographs of himself to a man he had met through his internet connected Xbox gaming system.
Folsom Police investigators identified the man as Timothy Wayne Hammerstone, 22 years old, of Polk City Florida.
The relationship between Hammerstone and the victim began in December 2009 after they met online while playing a military simulation game. Hammerstone recruited the juvenile to his “clan”, or team, and then began making inappropriate requests. Hammerstone’s reach extended into the victim’s Folsom group of friends who play the same game, and lasted until July 2010. Hammerstone even went as far as setting up new accounts for the victim and at least one friend in order to avoid detection by the children’s’ parents.
Based on the Folsom investigation, Polk County Sheriff’s detectives searched Hammerstone’s home yesterday and located numerous images of child pornography depicting several different children. He was arrested and booked into the Polk County jail on 16 counts of possession child pornography.
Folsom Police Detective Andrew Bates said parents need to be made aware that internet connected gaming systems such as Xbox and PlayStation pose the same threats as an internet connected computer or telephone.
Xbox, PlayStation Allow Remote Users to Communicate
These game systems allow the users to speak to one another, send text messages, and transfer photographs as well as live video feeds. Devices such as the Xbox pose a serious threat to the safety of children unless they are closely monitored by an adult.