While a lot of you may be prone to taking revenge on an ex in various ways, Thornton’s choice to utilize facebook cost her 18 months in jail and attorney’s fees to fight a long court battle after her ex, a police detective, decided to pursue criminal charges for identity theft!
Yes…. facebook is apparently THAT dayum serious!
What started as a prank to get back at her ex-boyfriend, led to various court dates for Thornton, a New Jersey resident.
The heartbroken woman used photos of Lasalandra to create a fake profile, then used it to say awful things about “his lifestyle and career.” The profile included Mr Lasalandra’s name, birth date and posted photographs of him and “status updates” stating that he had herpes, used drugs and slept with prostitutes regularly.
One update allegedly posted by Thornton pretending to be Lasalandra, stated, ”I’m a sick piece of scum with a gun.”
You may be thinking… ‘what’s the big deal? People do that mess all the time and don’t end up in jail.” Well unfortunately for Thornton, Lasalandra’s career in law enforcement granted him familiarity with criminal law, and he recognized her actions as a case of possible identity theft.
Lasalandra complained to officers that he was being impersonated online and a grand jury subpoena was issued to obtain the IP address from which the profile was made. All signs pointed to Thornton’s home computer, and she was subsequently charged with the crime of “identity theft” for creating the fake facebook profile.
[Sidebar: I woulda totally said "yeah it's my ip.... but my dog did it!' *cough* but that's just me... ]
Court documents claimed that New Jersey law generally states that impersonating another or assuming a false identity and acting in such an assumed character to obtain a benefit or to injure or defraud another is a crime.
Thornton’s attorneys argued that the state’s identity theft law doesn’t apply to the allegations, filing a defense motion on her behalf which stated:
Under the New Jersey statute, there is no plain wording, commentary, memorandum or any evidence of legislative intent to show that impersonating someone online or by electronic means is a crime.
Prosecutors claimed Thornton’s actions harmed her ex-boyfriend’s reputation and sought to prove
‘Certainly it would damage his good name, standing or reputation if false comments and assertions [were made],’ the court papers said.
Thornton has since been released from jail, where she spent 18 months, and will now have to perform 50 hours of community service and complete a psychological evaluation.
If her community service is not completed, Thornton’s charges will be reinstated.
Have you ever witnessed, considered, or been a victim of “online revenge”?
Will this case perhaps make you think twice?