Woman Sues Match.com after Date Tries to Murder Her

Worst. Date. Ever.

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LOIC VENANCE / AFP / Getty Images

Here’s the story of a date that’s probably not going to make it into one of Match.com’s television ads.

Mary Kay Beckman first met Wade Ridley after the online service paired the two up in September 2010, and knew him for only 10 days before breaking up with him. Four months later, according to Courthouse News Service, on the night of Jan. 21, 2011, Ridley hid in her garage and eventually attacked her, stabbing her 10 times and kicking her in the head. Beckman is now suing Match.com for $10 million, citing negligence, negligent misrepresentation, deceptive trade, failure to warn and negligent infliction of emotional distress.

(MORE: Major Online Dating Sites to Start Background Checks on Users)

In her official complaint, Beckman claimed that the site led her to believe that she’d end up in a  “stable and loving relationship with another member” and didn’t properly warn her about the dangers of meeting “an individual whose intentions are not to find a mate, but to find victims to kill or rape.” However, Beckman has not sued Ridley, who died in prison last year while serving  a sentence of up to 70 years for the crime. (For the record, he was also wanted for killing an ex-girlfriend in Phoenix.)

Following the attack, Beckman underwent several surgeries to repair her jaw, save her eyesight and hearing and to replace part of her skull, Courthouse News Service reports. She seeks $346,000 in economic damages, $5.4 million in noneconomic damages, and $4.1 million in punitive damages. In a statement, Match.com agreed that what happened to Beckman was “horrible” but said that the lawsuit was “absurd” and that the site cannot be held responsible for the actions of one “sick, twisted individual.”

MORE: Mapping Our Online Dating Lingo

79 comments
DownTheRabbitHole
DownTheRabbitHole

I think dating sites want money. They want the possibility of having every and anyone to sign up to pay them when they know they can't get in trouble for people not using precautions knowing what to expect when using a dating site. Using back ground checks would keep a lot more people/potential customers from signing up even if they have a minor things worrying that even something small would scare a searcher away.  I agree that it is horrible what she went through, but it was another unfortunate thing that can happen to anyone.  She just saw a hopeful reason to try and get some money though I know it had to really suck going through what she had to go through. But all in all.. She chose to date him.. She chose to use a dating site.  But also, any stranger or stalker could do the same thing.. Unless they are rich, which is highly unlikely who are you going to sue then?  It's all about chance. Being on dating site is no different from being out in public in my opinion.

sean.duggan
sean.duggan

Don't most of these paid dating services claim to have vetted the matches? If he had a criminal record, and it can be shown that they didn't pick up on it, this is in many ways no different from someone selling a used car and not disclosing to the buyer that the brakes fail after the car gets up to 55 MPH.

Me, I met my wife via OKCupid, but it's gone downhill a bit since Match.com bought them out.

TracyDBurton
TracyDBurton

Why would anyone want to pay for a dating site? My brother uses plentyoffish.com It is a free dating site. People need to learn how to meet people in their home towns and falling in love the normal way,Not meeting people online,You are not there with them everyday,therefore you can not hear about them or see them,Guess it is a chance you take.You can not sue a friend who referred you on a blind date,so what is the difference between them and match.com grow up,dont take anyone to a private place,meet them in public only,Have you not heard of a restraunt?

TrueBeliever
TrueBeliever

Yes.  It is horrible.  If he hid in her garage, how did he get there?  Had she entrusted him with an access code while they were dating -- that would be her own negligence.  Had she entrusted him with a key -- that would be her negligence.   Did she bother to get a Restraining Order against him when they broke up -- that omission would be her negligence.  Had she acquainted him with her dog -- that would be her own  negligence.  Did she have an alarm system which he would have activated when entering the garage -- that omission would be her own negligence.  Did she say rude things to him when they broke up?  If so, she could easily anticipate his "push back."

IsabelleIllbefreeFreeman
IsabelleIllbefreeFreeman

It is horrible what happened to this woman. Still, I question why the Match.com suit makes headline news as AA murder suit by parents of slain young woman, Karla Brada, is virtually ignored?
Whose Daughter Must Die Next?
Her name was Karla Brada. She dated a man she met in AA. Her AA sponsor encouraged the relationship. He (allegedly) strangled her after she asked him to leave her condo. He then slept with her dead body. Women must be made aware of how unsafe they are. No one deserves to be attacked and killed whether they are looking for love or help. Is this not news worthy?

http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/09/28/50771.htm
 
http://cougarblogger.com/2013/01/10/parents-worst-nightmare/

DoraValencia
DoraValencia

Is impossible to have background checks on every member that joins a site... And when meeting a new partner is not that hard to Google the individual at least to make sure they are not "a person of interest" in another crime.. This lawsuit is completely ridiculous, whenever we meet a new person there is a potential they'll be a serial killer or rapist, is up to each of us to be smart and take care of ourselves. I feel for Ms. Beckman but is not the sites fault. it was her choice to meet this guy beyond the site. 

Simbasu
Simbasu

Although I truly feel for Miss Beckman, I can't ever remember meeting anyone who wasn't aware that ANY new male in their life, especially one she does not meet through references or work, could be dangerous.  It defies common sense.  It seems to me that these days people are quick to align themselves with the sleazy attorneys that come out of the woodwork hoping to capitalize on tragedies like this, and deluding the victims into believing the deepest pockets are to blame. And to RossGonz, I need to point out that there are millions of users, and you honestly expect them to do a background check on them all?  Get real.  What if she had met him in a nightclub or bar, are they at fault for not doing background checks on their patrons?

jati
jati

The match was made in Hell.

PaytonBlake
PaytonBlake

I didn't realize people thought that just because you're on a dating site, means that everyone who uses it is completely safe....I thought people were smarter than that.

RossGonz
RossGonz

Both parties are to blame .. match.com should have back round checks and she should of taken precautions in meeting guys online. Alway do your home work "do your own back round check ".

YsabellaCHall
YsabellaCHall

Whats annoying me is that people are saying that she is trying to get match to take responsibility for HER actions. THe peson in the wrong is not her or match. Its the person who attempted the murder.

RonaldR
RonaldR

Well her actions now might show why he tried to kill her  -"PRIZE GOLD DIGGER"   a prize fool anyway blaming every one else except HER the real problem.  

sandivengeance
sandivengeance

If she was going to engage in this method of meeting people, she should have taken precautions, it is not the fault of the site that this happened to her. Neither is it her fault though, she was just very very unlucky.

john_xvra
john_xvra

This is another waste of our tax money.  Being unlucky is not a sue able cause.

pblakeii
pblakeii

No one takes responsibility for their own decisions any more, they always want to find someone else to blame, and hopefully someone with deep pockets. So sad.

StacyJohnson
StacyJohnson

This is terrible. The women should see Terms and conditions of using website first I am sure the website people are clever enough to insert a point in T & C for the defense.

KimberlyLozada
KimberlyLozada

It's terrible that she went through that, but she had to have known there was some kind of risk  meeting someone on a dating site.  I don't care how reputable Match.com is, it's still a website where people could be anything they want to be and hide their bad intentions with good intentions.  

Ronnie64
Ronnie64

Are you kidding me?????  How would a background check have aided in this situation??? Anyone can be anything they choose to be online or for a short time, we ALL know this.  You can be with someone for 20 yrs and not REALLY know them or what they're capable of.  This "woman" should be ashamed of herself - attempting to profit from her own lack of good judgement and common sense as well as defame a company . I hope Match.com doesn't cave and give her a settlement.  This is a tragedy no one should endure but it's no fault of ANYONE except the deceased man's and hers.  She should have suffered her physical pain, mental anquish and embarrassement locally rather than made a national fool of herself.  Crazy + Crazy = Match - looks like Match.com did its job to me.

ElizabethRupe
ElizabethRupe

I would sue them too cause they are a site that should only have decent people on board maybe they should make everyone take a litmus test and be screened to ward off crazy people

Jeb
Jeb

"didn’t properly warn her about the dangers of meeting ”an individual whose intentions are not to find a mate, but to find victims to kill or rape.”

BULL.  As a former member who is happily married to someone I met on match, there are TONS of safety advice and articles, EVERY STEP of the way.

They DO Have background check offerings but the user has to pay for them.I'm sorry for what happened to her though, but hardly a dating site's fault.  If she had met the man while shopping at Walmart, could she sue Walmart? Its ridiculous.

mbcls
mbcls

yes! match.com should be held responsible for not doing a background check before pairing people up! if a cable guy come to someone house, and he rapes the woman. the cable company not liable? just an example (cable company don't try to sue me).

ahenry0122
ahenry0122

This lady invited this man to her home less than 10 days.  She should of done her own investigating before disclosing where she lives.  It is just like meeting someone on the street. I don't care what promise match.com made nothing is guaranteed.  Even if he was a killer, he may not have a criminal record.  Be an adult and use common sense.  We tell children not to speak to strangers online, so what is the difference with an adult. 

Ibvook
Ibvook

I have no doubt that this woman had horrible situation, but nowadays every child is warned about dangers related with using Internet. I don't think that in this case match.com is responsible of anything (certainly they should warn on their website about this risk).

ramanan50
ramanan50

Because of the latest stratification of the Society, economic affluence and  Technology people resort to matrimony site advertising.

But one has to ensure that back checks are carried out by one self  and take care in collecting information and verify it .

Personal visits are mandatory.

It is safe to meet with the parents and enquire about the family directly and cross verify with neighbors diplomatically.

Though the process is laborious and calls for tact, it is important as it involves Life.

These suggestions are for Indian families who still think parents are important.

I got my son married through Internet matrimony site tamil matrimony.com

DarioImpini
DarioImpini

What happened to her is horrible but realistically all that can come from losing this case is for Match.com to bury a clause in their pages of disclaimers that users should be cautious about meeting anyone and that they are not responsible for any criminal results of a meeting.  The same legalese we never read and click "I agree" to in any online service we sign up for.  In fact, it would be odd if they didn't already have that in there.

It does seem to me though that the world is becoming more psycho every day.

lapazjim
lapazjim

This is another one of those BS law suites.Some lawyer probably came up with the idea and she went along with it.Both seeing dollar signs of course!! As it was stated How is Match.com responsible for the actions of a person registered on their site.This is as bad as blaming gun manufacturers for the actions of the person that purchased the gun.

These people are the ones that make this country a place where politicians now want to take away all of our rights.Its a sad day if and when people get away with this kind of BS.

roknsteve
roknsteve

It's called "Dating Roulette".  Enter at your own risk and be prepared to meet a male or female ax murderer.  

DonBartenstein
DonBartenstein

How is match.com responsible for knowing the mental state of this loser?