One 19 year old boy has seen his life destroyed after meeting a girl online and having sex with her, only to find out that she was underage.
Zach Anderson spent 90 days in jail and is now on two sex offenders registers in separate states after meeting the girl on app Hot or Not, with the girl claiming to be 17, but in reality only being 14.
In what has been deemed a deliberately harsh sentence, designed to make an example of him, the teenager from Indiana even saw the mother of the girl and the girl herself come forward to claim that she misled him and he believed her to be of age.
After the sentencing, Anderson now cannot live at home because his brother is 15, has lost all the work he did towards his computer science degree and has to be on a sex offenders register for the next 25 years.
The judge claimed:
You went online, to use a fisherman’s expression, trolling for women, to meet and have sex with. That seems to be part of our culture now. Meet, hookup, have sex, sayonara. Totally inappropriate behaviour.
There is a change.org petition to get all the charges dropped, something that the boy’s parents hope will happen, with 177,000 signatures already gathered.
The petition states:
In court, the girls parents didn’t just ask the judge to show Zach leniency, they called for the case against him to be dropped altogether.
Zach plead guilty but only because we were told he would be a candidate for Holmes Youthful Trainee Act status. The HYTA allows first-time offenders older than 17 but not yet 21 to avoid harsher penalties like the state-mandated 25-year listing on the sex offender registry.
Now Zach must live his life with a scarlet letter. He has to walk down the street and think: ‘Am I too close to a school? Is there a child who’s close to me? It’s not right and it’s not what the law was intended to do.