BENICIA — In most children's fairy tales, romantic relations between characters don't go much further than a kiss.

But a Contra Costa County mother and her daughter unexpectedly heard a raunchier tale on Thursday when they called the Benicia Public Library's story line.

Apparently someone had hacked into the library's dial-a-story service and replaced the fairy tale with a story more appropriate for the pages of a fetish porno magazine.

Geri Engberg said the story explicitly detailed an X-rated relationship between two animals, and laced the tale with various profanities.

Engberg said fortunately her 6-year-old daughter is too young to understand what she heard and she wasn't forced to explain why a dog and a pig were being intimate with each other.

"We call about eight or nine of these story lines and they are usually a short story for kids preschool aged or a little older," Engberg said. "Whoever did this clearly addressed the story to kids."

The story allegedly began with a man's voice telling boys and girls they were going to hear a story about bestiality, she said.

Engberg said she immediately alerted the Benicia Public Library and an employee promptly removed the message.

Library director Diane Smikahl said this is the first time she has heard of someone hacking into the dial-a-story line to change the message. A librarian usually records a new story, such as "The Three Bears," about once a week.

The system is like a voice mail box, requiring a four digit code to change the recording, she said.


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Benicia Police Sgt. John Daley also said he had not heard of something like this happening before in Benicia.

"Purposefully exposing children to that type of content and profanity is inconceivable," Daley said.

Daley said the incident is under investigation and the person responsible could face serious legal ramifications.

In addition to various misdemeanor offenses for annoying phone calls or obscene behavior directed towards children, the suspect could be charged with altering data on a computer system, which is a felony offense, Daley said.

There are no suspects at this time, he added.

Engberg said she will continue to call the story lines, but will be sure to hear at least the beginning of the story before letting her daughter listen.

"The whole idea is if parents don't have the time to read a story, it is something the kids do on their own," Engberg said. "But I guess this shows parents need to be aware of anything digital that someone could tamper with."

Smikahl said there are only two different librarians who read the stories, and that parents who call the line regularly should listen for a minute if they hear an unfamiliar voice.

"We want people to let us know right away if anything sounds unusual," Smikahl said.