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South Carolina man charged with sextortion causing Michigan victim's death

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(CBS DETROIT) - A South Carolina man is facing a seven-count indictment accusing him of sextortion that caused the death of a Michigan resident, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced.

According to the indictment, Glenn Daeward Boyd, 35, of Kershaw, South Carolina, posed as an 18-year-old woman on a dating website between Aug. 2-4, 2023, and sent nude photos to the victim. Boyd then told the victim that he was actually 15 and posed as the teen's grandparents, threatening to report him to his friends, family and police unless he paid money.

Federal officials say the victim died by suicide due to the sextortion.

"Our deepest sympathies are with the family and loved ones of the victim at the center of this case," said Cheyvoryea Gibson, special agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan, in a statement. "Sextortionists use any means necessary to exploit and deceive their targets, counting on the victim's feelings of shame and fear to achieve their goals. "The FBI has several resources available to anyone who believes they may be a victim of a sextortion scheme."

The FBI offered the following tips to protect yourself from sextortion:

  • Be selective about what you share online.
  • Be wary of anyone you encounter for the first time online. Block or ignore messages from strangers.
  • Be aware that people can pretend to be anything or anyone online. Videos and photos are not proof that people are who they claim to be.
  • Be suspicious if you meet someone on one game or app and this person asks you to start talking on a different platform.
  • Be in the know. Any content you create online, whether it is a text message, photo or video, can be made public.
  • Be willing to ask for help. If you are getting messages or requests online that don't seem right, block the sender, report the behavior to the site administrator, or go to an adult.

"Nationally and here in Michigan, we have seen a startling increase in the number of sextortion crimes – like we have alleged here – that result in the victim's death," U.S. Attorney Mark Totten said in a statement. "We are fully committed to holding perpetrators of these crimes accountable. At the same time, I strongly urge everyone who carries a device or is active online to remain aware that criminals constantly troll the internet and social media, to not assume people are who they say they are, and to know that if you make a mistake, law enforcement is eager and ready to help."  

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