Michigan man accused of sex with 12-year old Putnam girl - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Michigan man accused of sex with 12-year old Putnam girl

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WINFIELD, West Virginia -

Ashlee Liebert of Whitmore Lake, Michigan and the 12-year-old girl were found in a parked car in a remote part of Cross Creek Road near Buffalo. 

Putnam County Sheriff Mark Smith says it's actually a stroke of luck the two were found.  While deputies were taking a missing person report on the young girl, there was a report of a suspicious car on Cross Creek Road in Buffalo.  According to the criminal complaint, inside the car deputies found Liebert naked with the 12-year-old girl.  The two had sex.

"They were going back to Detroit, and had he not stopped over there and if we would have found this young lady it would have been quite some time," said Sheriff Smith.

The 5-month long relationship started with the online game "World of Warcraft." 

"You go in and you create your own person that looks almost like you.  You become friends with different people that you don't know and you team up and fight against other people," said a 13-year old Putnam County teen who did not want to be identified.

Experts said youngsters hide behind the internet with games and chat rooms which sets up the perfect opportunity for an online predator to strike.  Angie Sullivan, a psychologist with Putnam County Schools said it's easy for predators to get inside the head of youngsters.

"Predators tend to prime these kids and stay with them for a while.  They play the games with them and get more and more personable as they go so the student or the child gets more trusting," said Sullivan.

Sullivan said the solution for parents is know what your children are doing online.

"Keep very close tabs as to what they are doing on facebook, on e-mail, on the games, any of those things," said Sullivan.

Two Putnam County Sheriff's Deputies traveled to Michigan Monday to retrieve Liebert's computer as part of their investigation.  Liebert remains in the Western Regional Jail on a $250,000 bond.  He is charged with third degree sexual abuse and sexual abuse by a person of trust.