Keeping Kids Safe Online – Ashleigh's Legacy
A year ago today the body of Darlington teenager Ashleigh Hall was found in a field, not too far from Sedgefield. She'd been kidnapped, raped and murdered by serial sex attacker Peter Chapman.
The pair had met on Facebook after he'd posed as a 19 year old boy to lure the child care student into his trap.
After Ashleigh agreed to meet him, he pretended to be that 19 year old boy's Dad, to take her to him safely. It was when she became worried that he attacked her.
As police investigations continued into Ashleigh's murder, officers quickly discovered Ashleigh wasn't the only teenager that Chapman was grooming. Ever since then Durham Police, Darlington Borough Council and Darlington College have been trying to make sure that never happens again.
First up, her friends and fellow students at the college came up with a list of "Ashleigh's Rules" to help other kids across the County stay safe.
- If ever meeting up with somebody who is alien to you or your friends, make sure that you meet them in a group of at least 2-3 and in a public, well lit and populated area.
- Inform somebody of where you are going and what time you should be back, also the name of who you are meeting.
- Don't accept anyone on social networking sites that you don't know.
- Remember, never trust anyone who you have met online. You don't know what they're capable of.
- Never tell a stranger on network sites or chat rooms anything personal about yourself, eg. Where you live, Date of Birth etc.
- Never meet anyone you don't know. Simple as!
Chief Superintendent Andy Reddick led the team that convicted Chapman. Here's some advice from him:
EXTRA ADVICE FOR MUMS AND DADS
THERE'S ALSO SOME EXTRA ADVICE FOR SCHOOLS TOO...
Ashleigh's death rocked communities across County Durham and Darlington.
So much so, the childcare student's still helping other teens stay safe now.
It's after a group of other teenagers from her hometown decided to make a film, based loosely on her story, to warn other kids about the dangers which are lurking online.
'Choices' is going into all schools in the area. Here's a glimpse of it...
That is what people need to remember on Facebook, or any other social networking sites.
Once that app is downloaded it can act like a panic button for children. So, if they worry about something that someone says to them, they can click on the link.
That will then take them directly to CEOP - that is the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre.
Facebook added it to their sites in July and in just a month fifty five thousand people had added it to their profiles. Five thousand of them then asked for help, advice and support.
If your children do not have the `Click CEOP` app, but you are worried they are talking to someone they should not be, you can also get help from CEOP experts.
Just click on: www.ceop.police.uk
PARENTAL ADVICE ON INTERNET SAFETY
If you are worried about your child's safety on the internet...
Then Star News has some top tips on how you can do you're bit to make it safer.
We have been speaking to IT expert Tom Probst about what is the best way to make sure your child is safe when they go online:-