WARNING: This article contains details about sexual extortion and may affect those who have experienced it or know someone who has experienced it.
A British Columbia RCMP officer testified Monday at the trial of the Dutch man accused of sexually extorting Amanda Todd that the Port Coquitlam teenager wanted the harassing messages she was receiving to stop.
const. Robin Sedgman told the British Columbia Supreme Court in New Westminster that she met with Todd and his parents on several occasions in 2011 due to messages the teenager was receiving through her social media accounts.
“She wanted it to go away. She wanted it to stop.”
Todd took her own life in 2012 aged 15 after being exploited online for three years.
Dutch national Aydin Coban, 44, has pleaded not guilty to five charges relating to Todd’s case, including extortion, possession of child pornography and child luring. He’s not charged with Todd’s death.
Sedgman said she first met Todd and his parents, Carol and Norman, at a police station in British Columbia to discuss the messages the teenager was receiving, including where the videos and messages came from. pictures attached.
The RCMP officer also shared advice on how Todd could stay safe online. She said the teenager seemed ‘bored’ of talking to the police and ‘didn’t seem too concerned about what was going on’.
Police visits to father’s home
On January 3, 2011, Sedgman and RCMP Constable. Andrea Schadeck – who also testified at the trial – traveled to Norman Todd’s residence in Maple Ridge to meet him and Amanda.
Sedgman testified that while officers were there, Amanda logged into her Facebook account to show them messages she was receiving from a profile with the name Tyler Boo and printed them out.
She said that, again, Todd was not receptive to suggestions to delete her social media accounts or at least limit her Facebook friends list to people she knew personally. According to Sedgman, the teenager said she didn’t feel threatened by the messages at the time.
The two policewomen, who both worked as investigators in the sex crimes unit, visited Norman Todd’s home a second time on October 26, 2011.
This time, Schadeck went up to Amanda’s room to talk to her privately.
“She looked sadder than anything,” Schadeck said Monday.
The officer told the court that she spoke to Todd about how social media can be used to track a user’s location. She said the long conversation made her feel like the teenager was very lonely.
Video links sent to police
In early November 2011, Sedgman said he received information from a Maple Ridge officer that an email had been sent to members of the school Amanda Todd was attending at the time.
The email contained four hyperlinks to videos and photos where the 15-year-old girl exposed her breasts.
Sedgman testified that in one of the videos, Todd appeared to be having a conversation with someone about whether or not she should expose herself before lifting her shirt and showing her breasts to the camera for about 10 seconds.
The investigation was handed over to Schadeck in November.
Schadeck testified that she called the Todd family that month to tell them that the BC RCMP Child Exploitation Unit had been unable to trace the IP addresses from where messages and emails came from.
She again spoke to Amanda about her online and physical safety and advised her to delete her social media accounts. Schadeck said the teenager was still unhappy with the suggestion, but by the end of the phone call she had agreed to delete her Facebook profile the next time she had internet access.
The trial is expected to last another three weeks.
Support is available for anyone who has been sexually assaulted. You can access crisis lines and local support services through this Government of Canada website or the Canadian Association for the Elimination of Violence Database. If you are in immediate danger or fear for your safety or the safety of those around you, please call 911.
If you or someone you know is having trouble, here’s where to get help:
This guide to Center for Addiction and Mental Health explains how to talk about suicide with someone you’re worried about.