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Chris Hansen Is Launching A Kickstarter To Catch More Predators
Chris Hansen, former host of Dateline NBC's To Catch A Predator, is crowdsourcing funds for a new show in which he catches more predators. To Catch A Predator was a big hit. There was a Simpsons parody, a South Park parody, and even ICP wrote a song about the show (warning: the lyrics are NSFW). Chris Hansen's new show would be titled Hansen vs. Predator. The Kickstarter begins on Wednesday with a goal of about $400,000, the L.A. Times reports. Rewards include the usual promotional materials—hats, T-shirts, etc.—but also an opportunity to have Chris Hansen record your voicemail message for $150.
To Catch a Predator ran from November 2004 to December 2007. The show worked with local law enforcement and Perverted-Justice, a citizen watchdog group, to identify potential online predators by posing as minors in chatrooms. The decoys would then set up real-life meetings with the men who had solicited them for sex. However, when the man arrived, he would encounter Chris Hansen—not the typically 13 to 15-year-old he thought he was meeting. Hansen would then famously say, "Take a seat," and ask the man questions.
The show nabbed lots of men, but it wasn't without controversy, especially after an assistant district attorney in Texas committed suicide after appearing on the show. Others criticized the program for entrapment.
Hansen says that there's public demand for more investigations, and that technology has advanced beyond the AOL and Yahoo! chatrooms they were using to hunt for predators back then. "Now, there are 22 ways to communicate online," he said.
If someone you know exhibits warning signs of suicide: do not leave the person alone, remove any firearms, alcohol, drugs or sharp objects that could be used in a suicide attempt, and call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) or take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional.
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