Thursday, May 12, 2005
Attorney General Abbott Unveils Measures To Educate East Texas Children About Online SafetyLUFKIN - Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today unveiled measures to help protect children when they use the Internet and educate them about the Office of the Attorney General. He introduced students at Brookhollow Elementary School to the “Kids’ Page” of the Attorney General’s Web site, and to the Attorney General’s new Cyber Safety Officer.
The multimedia Kids’ Page (www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/kids) includes tips and games to educate children about how to stay safe while online. The Attorney General’s Cyber Safety Officer, Paul Aleman, provides students with information about Internet safety, the dangers of giving out their personal information, and acts as a liaison between the Attorney General and local law enforcement.
“Protecting Texas children is one of my top priorities as Attorney General,” Abbott said. “The Kids’ Page and our new Cyber Safety Officer teach students they can have fun on the Internet and be safe at the same time.”
Attorney General Abbott created the Fugitive and Cyber Crimes units in 2003 to track down and arrest child predators. The Fugitive Unit works to pinpoint and arrest convicted child sex offenders who have violated parole and could be stalking children. Cyber Crimes investigators assume the identity of underage teens in Internet chat rooms, which often leads to child predators soliciting them for sex online and then attempting to meet them. Predators agree to meet the person they think is a child, but are surprised to find out the “child” is actually a Cyber Crimes investigator.
To date, the two units have arrested more than 240 predators, including one in the Lufkin area. Liberty County sheriff’s deputies assisted Fugitive Unit officers in arresting Steven Eugene Sollock on July 2, 2004, for violating his parole. In 1997 in Harris County, Sollock, 33, was convicted of aggravated sexual assault of a child and sentenced to eight years in prison. The victim was an 11-year-old female. Sollock had been a fugitive since May 28, 2004.
In addition to online safety information, the Kids’ Page Web site contains a video question-and-answer session with Attorney General Abbott, games and coloring pages about Texas history and the Office of the Attorney General, and other helpful links for students. Students can also participate in interactive “investigations” and can even become a Junior AG. “Kyle Coyote” is the animated tour guide for the Web site, which includes information in English and Spanish.