True Crime Online Newsletter - August 12, 2013

I couldn't make this up if I tried. . .Delta confirmation number reads 'GONER'

Delta Airlines, headquartered in Atlanta, said it will ensure its system does not use "GONER" in confirmation numbers after it appeared on a passenger's ticket.

Passenger Kathryn Stockett posted a picture of a Delta ticket to her Twitter account and noted the confirmation number, which read "GONER5," NBC News reported Friday.

"Dear Delta Airlines, I know we've been through some hard times together but is this really my conf number?" Stockett posted.

Delta said the confirmation numbers are randomly generated, but officials will be ensuring the pattern does not come up in the system again.

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(DISCLAIMER: The following news items were found on the web and were not written or endorsed by WHO@; they are for informational purposes only)

Atomic Kitten's Liz McClarnon recalls stalker threats - 08/12/13
Atomic Kitten's Liz McClarnon has revealed that she felt compelled to report her stalker when she discovered he was also targeting fans of the group. The singer told ITV's Lorraine that people often don't take cyberstalking as seriously as threats that are made via other methods such as letter.

Matusiewiczes hit with federal charges, including cyberstalking - 08/11/13
For the four years before Thomas Matusiewicz shot his former daughter-in-law to death in the New Castle County Courthouse, his family engaged in a sustained, vicious campaign to spy on, threaten and harass Christine Belford over custody of three of her children, according to federal prosecutors. That included posting slanderous accusations about the 39-year-old online, hacking into her Facebook account and having associates drive by her North Star home, secretly videotape her and take down license plates of cars parked there.

Edcouch family arrested for cyber-stalking murdered in-law - 08/11/13
After loading up their family car with weapons, binoculars, restraints, an electric shock device, gas cans and a shovel, the Matusiewicz family allegedly all conspired to kill a Delaware woman who had married into their family. The recently unsealed federal indictment gives harrowing details about the family’s cyber-stalking and alleged conspiracy to kill their former in-law Christine Belford.

Herzog doc about texting while driving is properly frightening - 08/09/13
Acclaimed German filmmaker Werner Herzog has created a 35-minute documentary for AT&T called "From One Second To The Next" as part of a campaign against texting and driving. The harrowing short film is sure to scare viewers straight at "more than 40,000 high schools" and "hundreds of safety organizations and government agencies" where it will be shown, according to AT&T.

Miami man posts confession, photo of wife's body to Facebook -08/09/13
Derek Medina of Miami, Florida posted an apparent confession to Facebook along with a photo of his wife's dead body before turning himself in to authorities. He has been charged with first degree murder. "I'm going to prison or death sentence for killing my wife love you guys miss you guys take care Facebook people you will see me in the news my wife was punching me and I am not going to stand anymore with the abuse so I did what I did I hope u understand me," the post said.

Thai journalist harassed over Facebook postings - 08/09/13
A Thai journalist has been harassed and questioned today in connection with comments he posted to his personal Facebook page in early August that speculated about a possible military coup, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Thai authorities to drop the criminal investigation against Sermsuk Kasitpradit and to refrain broadly from curbing freedom of expression over the Internet.

Au pair who skipped bail leaves trail on Facebook - 08/08/13
A French au pair who vanished after admitting theft from her Welsh employers has left a Facebook trail that shows her partying across Europe, police said. Emeline Marie Essertel, who celebrated her 24th birthday Wednesday, has updated her Facebook page 11 times since she jumped bail in March, The Daily Telegraph reported.

3 relatives of courthouse shooter indicted, feds say cyberstalking resulted in death of victim - 08/08/13
The wife, son and daughter of a man who fatally shot two women at a Delaware courthouse earlier this year as they arrived for a child-support hearing have been federally indicted, charged with cyberstalking that resulted in the death of a victim, reports the News Journal. The shooter himself committed suicide after the Feb. 11 slayings. They apparently were sparked by a longstanding divorce-related legal battle between his son, David Matusiewicz, now 46, and his son's ex-wife, Christine Belford, 39. She and a friend, Laura Mulford, 47, who had come with her to the New Castle County courthouse in Wilmington for the hearing were both killed by Thomas Matusiewicz, 68, authorities said.

Are Internet Trolls the Modern Incarnation of Witch Hunters? - 08/08/13
In the age of the Internet troll, there's an unfortunately predictable cycle for what happens to women who talk about feminist issues online: They get barraged with rape threats and harassment. For examples: see here, here, here and most recently, here. The anonymous nature of Twitter and comment threads allows cowards to write hateful things to people without consequences, suggesting that this reaction is unique to the digital age. But it's not. The Twitter rape threat is just the 21st century incarnation of a centuries old reaction.

Rehtaeh Parsons suicide: two charged over photos in cyberbullying case - 08/08/13
Police in Canada have charged two young men with distributing child pornography in the cyberbullying case of Rehtaeh Parsons, a 17-year-old who killed herself after a photo of her allegedly being raped was shared online. The death of Rehtaeh, who was taken off life support after a suicide attempt in April, led to an outcry. Police initially concluded there were no grounds to charge anyone after a yearlong investigation.

Amazon could shut down cyber bullying website... but refuses: Parents of victims urge retailer to take action over site it hosts - 08/07/13
Amazon was dragged into the scandal over a notorious cyber-bullying site yesterday after it emerged that the web retailer ‘hosts’ the controversial social network. It can shut down, but has ignored a plea to do so from a British internet safety consultant. The revelation prompted the parents of children who died after being trolled on the ‘disgusting’ website to urge Amazon to take action, while experts accused of ‘promoting’ cyber-bullying.

Pa. Superior Court affirms harassment conviction of teen over Facebook post - 08/07/13
A state appellate court panel has affirmed a ruling by a trial judge who decided criminal charges were appropriate in the case of a teenager who posted on a social media website lewd comments about another girl. Three judges with the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed on Aug. 2 an earlier judgment by the Lebanon County Common Pleas Court in a case involving Lindsey Marie Cox, an 18-year-old who posted a comment to her Facebook page that said the other teen had the sexually transmitted disease genital herpes.

Max the Roomba cat celebrates Shark Week in viral video - 08/07/13
Max-Arthur, the shark costume-wearing, Roomba-riding cat has struck again. The Internet fell in love with the Texas kitty, who wears an awesome shark hoodie, riding the robotic vacuum and chasing a duckling around his person's kitchen. Max-Arthur, aka CatShark is back, this time paying tribute to Shark Week while also cleaning the kitchen.

Schoolgirl is 'trolled to death': Parents' agony as daughter, 14, 'hangs herself' after horrific abuse from bullies on website - 08/06/13
A teenager was found hanged at her home after suffering months of bullying by anonymous ‘trolls’ on a notorious website. Hannah Smith, 14, was taunted on ­ linked to at least four teenage deaths in the past year ­ over her weight, the death of an uncle and an apparent propensity to self-harm. She had also been urged to ‘drink bleach’ by the anonymous tormentors, friends said.

Walthamstow MP has endured a number of threats online - 08/06/13
The harassment of Stella Creasy MP on Twitter has continued after she was sent an image of a masked man brandishing a knife. The accompanying message, from the now suspended user @Murkztah_, read: “I’m gonna be the first thing u see when u wake up..” The 36-year-old Labour MP for Walthamstow was threatened with rape and received bomb threats on the social media site after supporting feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez in her campaign to have an image of a woman on banknotes.

Man arrested for cyberstalking - 08/06/13
Issaquah police arrested a 26-year-old man July 31, for cyberstalking his ex-girlfriend. The woman, who lives in Issaquah, first contacted police when she found several suggestive photos of herself posted online without her permission. In one case, the suspect pretended to be his ex-girlfriend online by posting the photos with a fake Craigslist ad for a massage escort. Commander Stan Conrad said the victim had been subject to the abuse for some time and police had to navigate through many legal hurdles in order to produce enough evidence to charge the suspect.


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