Oregon woman accused in West Tennessee child porn case

World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft

By Nick Kenney - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - A 49-year-old Portland woman accused of engaging a 14-year-old Tennessee boy in online sexual chats and trading explicit photos has been arrested by FBI agents.

Sallie Lawson Fifield was arrested Wednesday at her home on a warrant issued in Tennessee. She is charged in a criminal complaint with enticement and transferring obscene material. The boy lives in western Tennessee.

The complaint says Fifield met the boy while playing the online game "World of Warcraft" last July.

Thursday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Dan Newsom said online gaming gives potential child predators a new avenue to pursue their prey.

"Technology has given these perpetrators something they have not had previously, and that is access to children," said Dan Newsom of the U.S. Attorney's office.

Players of World of Warcraft, a game that can only be played online, interact with millions of others across the globe.

"Technically there's no rating on this game," said Joe James, a sales associate at Best Buy. "This game could go from just being fun to anything - people cursing, all kinds of things going on."

James compared the game to social networking, but with a challenge attached.

Stephen Lies, and agent with the FBI, says the game is a computer activity that parents should monitor just like any other.
 
"And that's a very intimidating thing for parents," he said. "But we stress to parents very clearly that they must be diligent in protecting their kids."

Fifield made an initial federal court appearance Wednesday, and was released pending a March 17 hearing.  In the meantime, she must wear a GPS monitoring device.

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved. The AP contributed to this story.