DA: It's Not Always Illegal To Steal Online Identity

Woman Steals Another's Photo, Name For Dating Websites

Going online can be a great way to find a date; however, people never know who they are really dealing with on the other end.

A Denver woman learned this lesson recently after an Aurora woman stole her identity and used it to attract men on dating websites.

Online identity theft such as this is not always a crime.

"I was shocked," said "Stacy" who asked that her real name not be revealed.

Stacy, 24, said she is afraid to put her name and face on television after someone pretended to be her online, for more than six months.

"I felt very betrayed," said Stacy.

7NEWS obtained a copy of the police report in which it states a 46-year-old Aurora woman confessed to taking Stacy's photos from Facebook and using them on several dating websites.

"She was looking to live vicariously through someone else's life because she was unhappy with her own," said Stacy.

Stacy found her photos and postings using her name on dating websites such as "Plenty of Fish," "Dallas Singles" and "Sugar Daddies."

"I was scared," said Stacy. "I was really really scared because I didn't know who it was."

But what scared Stacy even more is learning that the Denver District Attorney's Office refused to prosecute the case, saying no crime had been committed.

"For someone not to want to take a case like this," stumbled Stacy. "It's like ... imagine if this was your daughter. Imagine if this had happened to her."

"There are cases that get presented to us and you look at it and you say, 'This is wrong,'" said Lynn Kimbrough, a spokeswoman for the Denver District Attorney's Office. "It just seems wrong, but it may still not rise to that level where we need to reach where we can file it criminally."

Criminal impersonation, according to state statute, is when someone assumes a false identity and in that capacity unlawfully gains a benefit or injures or defrauds someone.

"In some instances there could be criminal conduct, but not in all of them," said Kimbrough. "In this particular case, after reviewing all the facts, the deputy (district attorney) said, 'I don't think we can prove it beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury.'"

"This person is taking advantage of the system," said Stacy.

7NEWS tried repeatedly to contact the woman who used Stacy's name and photos, but she never returned our calls.

Kimbrough said the woman who took Stacy's photos went about as far as she could without breaking the law.

"I want her to face the consequences and right now she hasn't," said Stacy. "She is getting a slap on the wrist and that is not OK."

Stacy said now that the district attorney's office is not moving forward with a criminal case, she plans on filing a civil lawsuit against the woman who used her name and photos.