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Arizona Daily Wildcat
January 26, 1998

Florida student lures 14-year-old through computer chat room

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (U-WIRE) - A University of Florida engineering senior who lured a 14-year-old girl he met over the Internet into a hotel room was sentenced Tuesday to five years of probation.

Daryl Steven Banks, 25, pleaded no contest to attempted lewd and lascivious assault on a person under 16.

Banks' probation stipulations include the completion of a psychosexual therapy program, no contact with the victim and no unsupervised contact with anyone under 16, according to court records.

He also is prohibited from being in any chat rooms on any computer system and from holding an occupation that involves the supervision of children, the records show.

Banks also must submit to testing for sexually transmitted diseases and must attend a restitution hearing on Feb. 20.

According to a sworn complaint, the girl started talking to Banks in an Alachua County chat room through America Online on May 18.

Banks, who called himself "John" inside the chat room, discovered that the girl liked basketball.

The complaint shows that Banks asked the girl if she wanted to meet him to play basketball, but the girl told him she "was only 14 years old and it would be hard to meet him."

According to the complaint, Banks convinced the girl to sneak out and picked her up after she left her parents' house secretly at about 11 p.m.

He took her to an ATM and withdrew $40 before taking her to a motel, the complaint stated.

The complaint states the girl said she was scared and did what he told her to do after they checked into a room.

After being interviewed by a Gainesville police detective, the girl identified Banks from the security video at the ATM. Bank records gave detectives his name and his driver's license photo was used to confirm his identity.

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