From the Harford County State’s Attorney’s Office:
Rachel Ann Hicks, a 37 year old woman from Orange County, California, was sentenced to serve 12 years in prison for a sexual offense committed against a 13 year old Harford County. Ms. Hicks met the boy while playing the game X-Box live, then contacted him through email and eventually obtained a cell phone number. She traveled from Florida, where her parents reside, to the boy’s family’s residence in Bel Air, Maryland, the day after Thanksgiving, 2010. She made arrangements with the boy in advance to meet him and he let her into the family home during the middle of the night, while his family was asleep. They went into his room and began playing video games until she sexually assaulted him. She then returned to California.
The boy’s father found text messages on the boy’s cell phone from an unfamiliar number in California and brought the case to the Harford County Child Advocacy Center. The father participated in the investigation which resulted in a telephone call being placed to Ms. Hicks, who admitted that she met the boy through the game, and traveled to Bel Air where she engaged in sexual relations with the boy. The defendant was charged and was extradited from California to Harford County for prosecution.
She entered a guilty plea to one count of Second Degree Rape on June 2, 2011. She was sentenced on August 3, 2011 by Judge William O. Carr of the Circuit Court for Harford County, to the maximum of 20 years 8 of which were suspended. She is to serve the remaining 12 years in the Maryland Division of Correction, to be followed by 5 years of supervised probation, where she is ordered not to have contact with the boy or his family, is not to have unsupervised contact with any child under the age of 18, is to undergo sexual offender treatment, and also required to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life.
At sentencing, the prosecutor, Diane Adkins Tobin told the Court “we have an obligation to protect our boys from on-line solicitation and on-line predators in the same way we protect our girls.” The victim’s father stated to the court, during a victim-impact statement, that his son was manipulated into trusting Ms. Hicks, and that she took advantage of his trust by selfishly stealing his innocence. She abused him both physically and mentally. She also devastated the family by sneaking into their home while the family was asleep and sexually abusing their child. The family did not know Ms. Hicks.
The case was investigated by Trooper Michelle Workman of the Maryland State Police, the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, assisted by the Orange County California Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, and the U.S. Marshall’s Service.