Category Archives: Cyber Abuse
David Waldman, 50, is an attorney who launched a relentless campaign against his banker ex-girlfriend after she ended their four-month relationship. He bombarded her with vile text messages, emails, and launched hateful websites. Waldman also went as far as to send a letter to his ex-girlfriend’s boss claiming that she’s a drug addict. After posting things about her that directly claimed her to have mental illness, and after threatening to appear at her apartment, Waldman told his ex-girlfriend’s employer that he was going to sue her for defamation, illegal trespass, and violating HIPAA.
Some of Waldman’s other communications included;
“I only hope you die of cervical cancer before I can f— up your s—,” Waldman wrote on a website he created in 2014 called eurotrashroyalty.blogspot.com. “No k–e civil attorneys, no car load of your pals, or anything else you have in your arsenal will cause me to even blink.”
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They call it a “prank” or a “hoax”, but it’s actually a fraudulent call to law enforcement with intent to have an innocent person or persons killed under color and claim of official right.
The family of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student activist David Hogg was the victim of a “swatting” incident Tuesday morning.
A SWAT team responded to a call just after 8:30 a.m. of a barricaded subject at Hogg’s residence. The caller said there was a person with a weapon inside of the home, Broward County Sheriff’s spokesman Joy Oglesby told CNN.
The call was later determined to be a hoax.No one was at home at the time of the incident, Oglesby said. Hogg and his family are in Washington D.C to accept the RFK Humanitarian Award.Swatting is usually done by computer hackers, gamers or people skilled in online and smartphone communications as a prank. They make a false report of a serious crime in progress, resulting in police making a major show of force on innocent, unsuspecting people.
Imagine this …
Two guys are playing an online computer game. They get angry with each other. One guy threatens to have the other swatted, that is, he will make a false report to the police so they will show up ready to kill. The other guy dares him to and gives him a fake address.
The guy who threatened the swatting contacts another guy in California who is ruthless, has a history of making false police reports and bomb threats, and takes pride in doing it. The swatter who is in California, makes a false police report to Wichita, Kansas.
It ends with an innocent 28-year old father being killed. His children no longer have a father.
Now, don’t imagine it. It is true.
Tyler Barris in Court
Tyler Barris was the swatter. On December 28, 2017, he made a false police report that he was in the house…
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Cross-posted from Stop Cyber Abuse.
“The response by and large is: Ignore it and turn off your computer,” said Danielle Citron, a University of Maryland law professor and author of “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace.”
Law enforcement must realize that there is a difference between internet trolls and cyberstalkers. When trolls are ignored, they generally go elsewhere and find someone else to hassle. They generally don’t have personal hatred and retribution against those they troll. Trolls generally have no personal knowledge of those they troll.
Cyberstalkers are different. What they do is intended to cause harm in the personal lives of their target victims and some extend that harm to the family of target victims. They have usually been friends or another type of acquaintance. When they are ignored, they find another way to get their target’s attention. If their overall intent is to destroy their victim’s life, they continue and progress in their course of conduct.
As this case demonstrates, when they think that they will not be arrested, they eventually do something so outrageous that it goes beyond cyberstalking.
The convicted perpetrator in this case used actions to conduct his cyberstalking that cannot be explained in summary. In other words, this post is going to be longer than usual. There are two main sources I use for this post. The Department of Justice’s press release gives details of illegal actions leading to arrest. The other source is the Seattle Times that published an interview with the victim, Francesca Rossi.
Juan Thompson, 31, of St. Louis, was employed as a journalist by The Intercept from November 2014 until January 2016. Thompson was fired for fabricating sources and quotes in stories.
In late 2014, Francesca met Juan on an online dating site. She worked as a social worker. They bonded over their commitment for reform. In the Spring of 2015, Juan moved into Francesca’s Brooklyn apartment.
Francesca started getting harassing texts from ex-boyfriends. The wife of an ex-boyfriend said she sued Francesca, accusing her of giving the ex-boyfriend a sexually transmitted disease. The lawsuit turned out to be a hoax. Then Francesca found a nude picture of herself online.
Francesca contacted Carrie Goldberg, a lawyer that specializes in online harassment. Attorney Goldberg quickly figured out that only one person was behind the harassment. Juan had been posing as Francesca’s ex-boyfriends for months. Francesca believed that he was trying to make her feel bad so he could intimidate and control her. (Known fact; Stalkers often create conditions to cause their target victims to feel they need them to resolve or for comfort.) Read the rest of this entry
The Democrat and Chronicle reports that when first interviewed by the FBI, William Rosica claimed innocence. His former girlfriend received emails from Katy Jones. Rosica’s proof of his innocence was showing FBI agents that Katy Jones also sent him a load of emails. Rosica claimed that Katy Jones was sending emails to him to warn him that his former girlfriend was surveilling him.
“Please be careful,” read one of the Katy Jones emails to Rosica. “She is very devious and wants to ruin you. She thinks you’re with someone else.”
As the agents suspected, Rosica was using the name Katy Jones when sending the emails to his former girlfriend and himself.
“Between February 2016 and March 2017, defendant William Rosica subjected the victim to a nonstop sadistic campaign of terror and psychological torture intended to kill, injure, harass, and intimidate her”.
Federal prosecutors alleged that Rosica enlisted other police to surveil his former girlfriend; had other individuals use disposable “burner” phones to pass information onto him about her whereabouts; had someone rummage through the woman’s trash; and surreptitiously secured information about her television viewing that he then used “to show that he knew her every move”. Read the rest of this entry
Cross posted from Stop Cyber Abuse
On January 3, 2018, I predicted that if Kansas has felony murder law, that Tyler Barriss would be charged for the death of Andrew Finch.
I’ve been following and posting about this case. It is another demonstration for how cyber abuse crosses the line of the internet into the personal and private lives of victims, causing harm emotionally, physically and in this case, resulting in death.
Tyler Barriss made a call reporting that he killed his father, was holding his mom and little brother hostage, had poured gasoline throughout the house and was planning to set it on fire. He gave 911 dispatch an address. It was not his address. Barriss was making a swatting call. Andrew Finch, the man at the address, heard noise outside the house and opened his front door. He was shot dead by a Wichita police officer.
Barriss, who is 25-years old, was still on the phone with dispatch after Andrew was shot. Andrew was unarmed and uninvolved in the events leading to Barriss’ false police report. Andrew was 28-years old and the father of two children. Read the rest of this entry
The victim waited three years for trial, but only had to wait 20 minutes for the verdict.
In 2010, Brittany Assam was 22 years-old, and James Krey was 37 years-old. They both were police officers with the Davie, Florida police department. They had dated for 18 months and broke-up in February 2015. James Krey wanted Brittany to leave town. He threatened to send naked pictures and a sex video of Brittany to their colleagues if she didn’t leave town.
“Jimmy, please don’t destroy me. I will leave the department,” Brittany said in one text message, which she read to the jury at trial.
“You’re going to have to leave Broward, sweetheart,” he replied. “Anywhere you go, I have people.”
On March 10, 2015, Brittany took the threatening text messages to the Coral Springs Police Department where she resided. James Krey was arrested and placed on paid leave.
In July 2017, Krey asked the court to exclude evidence from his cell phone. Judge Bailey declined to suppress the disputed evidence because police did not actually search the contents of Krey’s phone until after they had obtained a warrant. Krey’s defense lawyer, Jeremy Kroll, conceded that the jury could still see the texts on Brittany’s phone. Read the rest of this entry
There was a swatting incident on December 30, 2017 in Wichita, Kansas. I’ve been reporting on it on my other blog. Some of you might already know that my other blog deals solely with cyber abuse, whether harassment, stalking, swatting, threats, spoofing, or combinations.
Today after reading some articles and comments on Twitter about the most recent swatting incident, I asked myself if there is anything I could have done to make information more available; to inform the public that spill-over of internet harassment into the personal lives of target victims is dangerous. However, as with other issues, people don’t seem to take an interest unless major media reports it first or unless it happens to them. Then too, I’m only a drop of water in a vast ocean.
Swatting is a prank where someone makes a call to a police department with a false story of a happening crime involving killing or hostages and guns. Police arrive and at times, SWAT is dispatched.
In order to pull-off the prank, an address is needed and that is generally obtained by doxing targets. Doxing is the seeking and gathering of personal information of others to use to harass, cause them fear and distress, post publicly on the internet, and yes — to swat or encourage others to do so.
On November 23, 2014, I blogged about a civil case filed in Northern Illinois that involved swatting. The plaintiff in that case was awarded $50,000 by a jury.
On February 9. 2015, I blogged about a case where a Nevada man swatted a resident of Naperville, IL and was extradited to Illinois for prosecution. The State’s Attorney stated that he would seek legislation to make swatting a felony.
On May 20, 2015, I recapped those two cases in another blog post about a couple arrested for harassment by eletronic media.
In August 2017, I wrote a post about a Bill introduced by Representatives Katherine Clark (D-MA), Susan Brooks (R-IN) and Patrick Meehan (R-PA). The Bill is H.R. 3067 and is titled the Online Safety Modernization Act of 2017. If passed, it will make swatting and doxing federal crimes.
Now that the father of a 2-year old and 7-year old is dead because of a swatting prank, Kansas.com, the Post Gazette, and the New York Times among other news sources, are reporting on the introduced Bill and asking the question, who is at blame for Andrew Finch’s death? Read the rest of this entry
I’m cross-posting here from the flightattendant blog because the threat made by Santiago Rodriguez pertains to this blog.
Santiago Came To Me Asking For Help
In May 2014, a man named David Piercy filed for a restraining order against Santiago Rodriguez. The court granted Piercy a temporary restraining order against Santiago. There was a hearing scheduled for a ruling on the permanent restraining order. As I understand it, there were exchanges on Twitter where Santiago became aware that bloggers and others had allegedly been harassed by Piercy. Someone pointed Santiago in my direction and he reached out to me.
Subsequently, Santiago asked that I put his name on the border of my blog, We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident, as a writer. This is how it happened …
(Cross posted from Flightattendantfailures)
After an approximate 3-month investigation, a 14-year-old Northampton, PA student has been charged with cyber harassment and ethnic intimidation. The 14-year old took a video of a 16-year old student eating lunch and posted it on Snapchat. The 14-year old is White. The 16-year old is Black.
Northampton County District Attorney, John Morganelli, said of the video;
“I reviewed the video today and I find it to be highly offensive and reprehensible. It depicts the 16-year-old minding his own business eating chicken wings while the 14-year-old records him and narrates it by describing the scene as ‘a N-word eating chicken.’
“The video demeans the 16-year-old with numerous uses of the N-word and references to being broke and on welfare. As bad as that is, the 14-year-old published the offensive video on social media including Snapchat that was viewed by numerous students as well as the 16-year-old male, …”
However, the District Attorney did not know of the video until after the 16-year old Black student was arrested and charged with simple assault, harassment and disorderly conduct. That’s because while at a football game attended by both student, the Black student retaliated by opening a can of whoop-ass on the 14-year old.
Neither teen has been publicly identified by authorities.
D.A. Morganelli will allow the 14-year-old to seek an “informal adjustment” in juvenile court. If he completes the probationary requirements, he will not be charged with the crimes.
The 16-year old Black student will also be allowed an “informal adjustment.” Morganelli said the black student had previously been the subject of discrimination from a group of students calling themselves “the rednecks.” He said he had a confederate flag thrown on him when he transferred to the school from out of state. Read the rest of this entry
On January 19, 2016, California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and Placer County District Attorney R. Scott Owens, announced the arraignment of Riley Bangerter, 36, of Roseville. Bangerter has been charged with 11 counts of identity theft in a case of cyber harassment. Bangerter was arrested on December 3, 2015 and was arraigned on January 11, 2016. Bangerter has pled not guilty.
In 2011, Attorney General Harris created the eCrime Unit within the California Department of Justice to identify and prosecute for crimes including identity theft, cybercrimes and other crimes involving the use of technology.
An investigation by Attorney General Harris’ eCrime Unit found that Bangerter superimposed images of his ex-wife onto pornographic images and posted them online, accompanied by her personal identifying information.
When announcing charges against Bangerter, AG Harris stated,
“Bangerter’s heinous actions sought to humiliate, belittle and destroy the personal and professional life of his victim. This prosecution sends a clear message to all who dare to perpetrate the crimes of cyber harassment and cyber exploitation, that these cowardly acts will not be tolerated in California. I thank the Placer County District Attorney’s office for their partnership and commitment to holding Bangerter accountable for these deplorable acts.”
Michael C. Ford thought he was sophisticated in how he terrorized young women on the internet. His methods however, resulted in federal charges of interstate threats, fraud in connection with computers, wire fraud, and cyberstalking.
Some of us are familiar with the threats, being on the receiving end. They are threats that unless you do what the perpetrator wants, that they will post your personal information on the internet. Many times, that is combined with claiming to have some type of “public document” and misrepresenting it so they can demean and mock.
Michael C. Ford however, did not use “public documents” as a threat against his victims. He hacked into protected accounts on the internet and obtained sexual photos of his victims. The 17 page warrant is an interesting read.
Ford used various Google email addresses to make contact with a woman, reported to be 18-years old, letting her know that he had obtained some sexually compromising photos of her, and that he also knew her real name and address. He demanded that she take videos of other girls undressing and/or nude, and send them to him or he would release the photos to her family and friends, and post them on the internet along with her personal information.
In November 2014, we reported on the case of Steven and Joseph Rusinowski versus Robert DiDomenico. It was a case of cyberharassment gone wild. The case was originally filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County and on July 15, 2011, transferred to the federal district court for the Northern District of Illinois. On October 2, 2014, the jury returned a verdict in favor of Rusinowski and against DiDomenico, awarding Rusinowski $50,000.
One of the most important rulings in that case caught the attention of attorneys. The judge ruled that Illinois has long arm jurisdiction that applies to electronic harassment. That means that those who harass citizens of Illinois over the internet and/or telephone, no matter where the perpetrator lives, will have to defend in Illinois.
In February of this year, we reported on Brandon Wilson of Las Vegas, Nevada, who hacked, harassed, and pulled pranks over the internet. Evidently feeling comfortable behind his computer and using handles, he made a serious mistake — he made a call to Naperville, Illinois 911 and gave a false police report resulting in SWAT showing up to an innocent man’s house. Evidence was gathered from Wilson’s computers showing that it was not the only time that he made a false police report.
Wilson was extradited to Illinois.
Last month, KMOV news reported that a Collinsville, Illinois’ family was electronically harassed. It began with the family’s 12-year old son receiving threatening voice texts and harassment on Facebook. The 12-year old’s brother, 20-year old Devon Dean, tried to step in to stop it, but the person then made him a target. The harassment included racially offensive comments. Read the rest of this entry
The other week, I was watching the Steve Harvey show and Paula Todd was a guest on his program. Paula Todd is a Canadian journalist, investigative author, broadcaster, and lawyer. She is a professor of broadcast journalism and digital media at Seneca College, and is a frequent speaker on cyberabuse, Internet culture, writing, reporting, literacy and freedom of the press. In 2014, she published the book, Extreme Mean: Trolls, Bullies and Predators Online.
An introduction of her book starts with;
“Cyberbullying, tormenting and revenge porn. Workplace digital skullduggery, online defamation and reputation annihilation. Cyberstalking, Anon hate and adults ridiculing other’s children. Digital sexual extortion, blackmail and predators on the prowl. Which kids, youth and adults are behind this negative online behaviour and what can be done to stop the abuse?”
For those who have Word Press blogs, you know that we can see referrals to our blog from other sites and emails. I don’t always check that section on the Admin side, but when I saw a significant increase in the number of views one day, I did check.
Steve Harvey’s website linked to an article on Blackbutterfly7. Words cannot express how honored I was. Of all the sites on the internet that reported on the particular subject matter, Blackbutterfly7 was chosen. I didn’t publicly share that information. Why? Because for years, cyberextortionists stalk the internet looking for opportunity to disparage this blog and defame me. I did not want them trying to verbally vandalize Steve Harvey’s website and taking up the time of his staff to moderate their defamatory vileness. Read the rest of this entry
Lessons learned, old lessons remembered……
(Alert. Some might find the content in the comments of others presented in this article to be offensive.)
Five words I would hear on a regular basis day in and day out when training as an amateur boxer; “Protect yourself at all times.” You hear those words time and time again in the gym, even while hitting heavy bags or doing mitt work. It’s important even during sparring although those sessions are controlled and not as intense as an actual fight.
The idea is to instill that way of thinking into your head so you keep your hands up, keep your head moving and your feet moving, thus reducing the chance of getting caught with a shot you don’t see only to deposit you on the canvas.
It’s the last set of words you hear after having passed the ammunition to your opponent (Touching Gloves) and just before the opening bell sounds.
What do I mean in all of this? Lets look back when the internet started to surface and started to become the trend that it is today.
If you were a parent back then or even a single lady living alone, the internet was a place where you knew trouble lurked. You didn’t want your kids on the internet because you have prowlers trying to lure your kids to meet them. You have scam artists setting up websites in attempt to look legit but are intended to get your personal info and steal your identity or clean out your bank account. These are things we are all aware of and we all keep our guard up in regards to these types of realities. But I am going to take it even one step further. How many of you have surfed Youtube only to see some crazy conspiracy theories in the videos? I am pretty sure everybody here has stumbled across them on a couple of occasions.
The disturbing part is the creators of the videos; the creators of those theories, believe in them so much that if you even utter a word disagreeing they tend to claim your hired by the Government sent out to discredit truth seekers. Or am I the only one who happens to find Youtube users like that? Don’t take my word for it. Look up some of the Planet X theorist and try to debate reality with their warped sense of thinking and see what happens.
Anyhow, I have seen some crazy stuff surfing. There are videos where anti-Obama nutters claim that the Aurora shooting, Sandy Hook and even the Trayvon Martin shooting never took place. They claim that these were all paid actors and one huge effort to take away our 2nd amendment rights. Read the rest of this entry