Lori Drew, the Missouri mother once accused of scheming over the Internet to humiliate 13-year-old neighbor Megan Meier, who later committed suicide, was supposed to be sentenced in U.S. District Court yesterday for three misdemeanor counts of accessing computers without authorization. The sentence has now been delayed until July 2.
momlogic: What was your reaction when the judge postponed Lori Drew's sentencing until July 2nd?
Tina Meier: I am certainly disappointed that she was not sentenced yesterday. Every time you go, it's an anticipation of what's going to happen, but at the same time, the judge still did not dismiss the case, so it keeps me somewhat hopeful that the judge is truly taking everything into account and thinking extremely hard about what to do at this point, and with everything he's got. I hope he will see there was the intent, it was a game, and I hope the judge will sentence Lori Drew to the maximum jail time, which is three years. The prosecutor has asked for the maximum on each count, which is one year in jail and $100,000. She is facing 3 counts, which could give her a total of three years in jail.
ML: You traveled from Missouri to California to attend the sentencing. Now that it's been postponed, do you think you'll get a sense of closure?
Tina Meier: A lot of people say the word "closure" ... there will never be closure. I hope to walk out of the courtroom knowing the judge has sentenced her to a maximum of three years in prison, and I hope this case will serve as a model for other cases that may arise. Sadly, this will not be the last case. I know others who are going through this and enduring this, and I hope they will have a case to look at and use as a model for people to be penalized. It's extremely stressful to go through this. At the end of the day, I don't make the decision. It's up to the judge, and I have to hope and pray the judge will take his time and make the right call. When I left the courtroom, it was certainly disappointing, but I am going to continue to speak out against bullying and cyber-bullying, so people can understand the effects of this. I am working very hard with the Megan Meier Foundation. We are asked to speak at schools across the USA daily. The way I know it's helping is I had five children from Indonesia send me an e-mail because they are working on a report and they're talking about Megan's story. If I know this story can get to Indonesia, Australia, the U.K., and all over the world, and I answer questions for these middle school children, then I know positive change is happening. And to me, that's amazing. I try to focus on the positives.
ML: How is your daughter, Allison, handling all of this?
Tina Meier: I am leaving in an hour and heading back to St. Louis to be with my daughter, Allison. It will be nice to get back home to my daughter, who did not come to California with me. I am trying to keep Allison away from all of this. She's aware of what's going on, but she's almost 13 years old and I want her to enjoy being that age. Certainly, if she has questions we talk about it, we talk openly and honestly, but as far as calling her and telling her about the postponement, I absolutely don't do that. I talk about normal things with her, like what's going on in school. Allison wants to see Lori Drew be served the maximum jail sentence, but as a 13-year-old typical girl, she's into her friends, boys, and everything besides school. She's a great child and we keep a good eye on her, and make sure she's okay. We're on top of things with her. She's gone through a lot, and she's doing very well under the circumstances.
Do you think Lori Drew should get the maximum sentence of three years?