True Crime Online Newsletter - July 28, 2014
A Texas teen was woken up by her cellphone in the middle of the night and it wasn't because she had set the alarm to go off by mistake. Ariel Tolfree had a rude awakening after she placed her Samsung Galaxy S4 under her pillow before going to sleep. The 13-year-old's "high-tech" phone caught fire and it was burnt to the point where it is barely recognizable. Things could have been worse if she hadn't smelled the phone burning. "I didn't think much of it, so I went back to sleep, and then I woke up again and it was more prominent," Tolfree told KDFW. The fire, which may have been caused by a replacement battery, singed Tolfree's bedding and mattress, as well as her pillow. "The whole phone melted," said Tolfree's dad. "The plastic, the glass. You can't even really tell that it was a phone." He thinks the Galaxy S4 should come with a "big warning on it, like a cigarette label." The phone does come with the following warning: "Covering the device with bedding, your body, thick clothing or any other materials that significantly affect air flow may affect the performance of the phone and poses a possible risk of fire or explosion, which could lead to serious bodily injuries or damage to property." In addition to the phone, all of the other damaged items will be replaced by Samsung.
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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)
Youth held for allegedly threatening ex-girlfriend with her semi-nude photograph - 07/28/14
The LT Marg police on Saturday arrested a 24-year old garment trader for allegedly possessing semi-nude photograph of his former girlfriend and threatening to put her photograph on the Internet. The suspect was forcing the victim to marry him, police said. The arrested person has been identified as Nischay Bansal, 24, a resident of Sikka Nagar in VP Road.
Eight more potential victims in case of Orléans stalker - 07/27/14
Ottawa police believe there could be other victims in the case of a 29-year-old man who stands accused of harassing more than 20 women online under the name Scotty Toppers. Since they put out a press release Friday, police said eight more women have contacted them reporting they were harassed by the same person.
Neuroscientist who claims he's fathered 58 children while running a 'one-stop shop' insemination service faces jail for molesting woman who used his 'breeding programme' 07/26/14
A ‘narcissistic’ academic who claims to have fathered 58 children as a private sperm donor is facing jail for molesting a woman who used his services. Professor Gennadij Raivich, 51, set up a ‘one-stop shop’ on the internet to artificially inseminate women who were desperate to start a family.
Ban on cyberstalking, phone threats reborn 2 months after being tossed by state's highest court - 07/25/14
State officials acted quickly this summer to fix problems with an old law adapted to fight a modern problem: cyberstalking and other threatening electronic communication. The state's highest court ruled in May that the old law was too broad and could infringe on the right to free speech. That made it unconstitutional. But domestic violence advocates, including the Onondaga County shelter Vera House and the district attorney's office, sounded the alarm that victims were no longer protected from threats made by abusers.
What Happens Online Stays Online - 07/25/14
Internet has brought a shift in the way we do things today, whether you are in San Francisco or Kampala this is the first time in civilization where you can get information instantly. We represent the Information age era and we have the responsibility to use all these technologies around us to do good and be the better versions of ourselves.
Former chief Rabbi blames social media for inflaming wars - 07/25/14
The former Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has warned of of the potential of social media to inflame wars to global proportions and said: "God himself weeps at the evils being committed in His name." Speaking in a debate on the freedom of religious belief in the House of Lords, he said that 70 years after the Holocaust, he never imagined the phrase, "Death to the Jews", would be heard again on the streets of France and Germany.
Bullying not just child's play - 07/25/14
I still recall, with clarity, rushing to get ahead of the groups of kids walking home at the end of the school day. We were “in-town” kids, most of us latch key and without the protection of a school bus. Another tactic was to stall to stay late and help the teacher or to serve detention. Time enough for the kids to get ahead of me. Time enough to keep from getting shoved around and my face slapped efforts aimed at engaging me in a fistfight.
Florida man investigated for animal cruelty after posting photo pointing gun at cat's head - 07/25/14
After a man posted a photo on Facebook of him appearing to threaten one of a cat's nine lives, Florida police started to investigate him for animal cruelty. Thomas Mcguinness of Port Charlotte allegedly posted a photo of himself appearing to be holding a gun and pointing it at a cat.
Toronto Twitter harassment trial: Second woman says Gregory Alan Elliott wouldn’t leave her alone - 07/24/14
The second of three women alleging Gregory Alan Elliott criminally harassed them via Twitter took the stand Thursday, testifying that she became concerned that Elliott would confront her in real life rather than just online. The trial is possibly the first in Canada to address harassment solely by tweet, and raises issues about the expectation of online privacy, freedom of speech and the treatment of women on the Internet.
Star Call of Duty player "Aches" banned for four league games and a tournament - 07/24/14
Major League Gaming has handed pro Call of Duty player Patrick “Aches” Price a four match Pro League ban. He's also banned from taking part in the upcoming NA 2K Tournament this July. MLG say the ban was issued for "repeated harassment of MLG employees and conduct detrimental to the league".
Sextortion: cyberstalking's new frontier - 07/23/14
The email terrified the young mother. “What if I told you I had pics of you?” the unknown writer asked. “Like a lot. Would you send me more?” “They were pretty x-rated,” he added. To prove he wasn’t bluffing, the mysterious emailer sent four naked or suggestive photographs of the woman, which had been stored in a laptop computer stolen in a recent burglary of her New Hampshire apartment. He threatened to publish them if she didn’t send him more explicit ones.
Suspect seized for teen cyber harassment - 07/23/14
Luxembourg police have issued a warning to social media users, as they are currently investigating a suspect who harassed girls through social networking sites such as Facebook and Snapchat. The man in question was brought to the police's attention by the FBI who identified the suspect after finding him flirting with girls through dummy accounts, striking up an acquaintance and slowly inviting them to share photos of a sexual nature on such sites as Snapchat.
’530 Fatties’–Cyber Bullying Overweight Teens On Facebook - 07/23/14
530 is the area code and you know what Fatties means. A Facebook page called 530 Fatties was created to humiliate overweight people–especially teens–by posting unflattering pictures of them to the page and sharing. The page was removed after CBS13 in Sacramento started reporting on the story. (You can see the CBS13 report here.) Young women who were targeted by the cyber bullying campaign contacted police, according to Business Insider. 530 is the area code for Yuba-Sutter in northern California.
Sexual Assault Witnesses At Occidental College Subjected To Vile Harassment Emails - 07/22/14
On June 6, a stranger from Powersite, Missouri, emailed a female witness to a sexual assault case at Occidental College in Los Angeles to complain she represented "what's worst about America." Two days earlier, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, a civil liberties nonprofit known as FIRE that mostly focuses on free speech issues, had announced it was working with a John Doe who was suing Occidental. Doe, a pseudonym for an anonymous freshman, was expelled in December after Occidental found him responsible for sexual assault. FIRE contended in an email blast to followers that the expulsion lacked due process for the accused.
The trouble with trolls - 07/22/14
Though social networks were not designed with the intention of letting someone anonymously abuse another online, the reality is that people utilize the ability to hide behind online identities to threaten other users. These could be veiled attacks, direct abuse, or even threats to “cause bodily harm”. What can you do if you’re trolled and threatened on any social network? Follow our five-step guide.