AG Cracks Down on Child Predators

WILMINGTON -- North Carolina's attorney general is cracking down on child predators with a new set of laws, and he's hoping parents will help by keeping track their children's Internet use.

Roy Cooper wants to increase punishment for predators, give police more ways to track down offenders, and require those who discover pedophiles to turn them in. He's also pushing to make social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook require a parent's permission before allowing a minor to register.

Kyanne Delavord already keeps a close eye on her 13-year-old daughter's MySpace account.

"The computer's in the kitchen, and everything she does is right there, so at any time, we can see," she said.

Her daughter, Shelby Thomson, says she knows to avoid strangers online.

"I know better. Usually, to say 'No' if someone starts talking to me weird or anything. I delete them," she said.

But under the current rules, children can sign up for an account on a site like MySpace without their parents ever even knowing. All anyone needs for an account is an e-mail address and a password.

Pre-teens April Parker and Briana Cantrell say the proposed tougher restrictions are probably a good idea, considering they have friends who have put themselves in dangerous positions.

"I know this one person that they actually met somebody that they didn't know," Parker said. "They actually met them somewhere and they went out."

The two 12-year-olds don't mind mom and dad hovering, because they say they realize in this day and age, it goes with the territory.

Reported by Nicole Ferguson