Online insults result in charges

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Southern Girl

Posts: 284

Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2004 2:56 pm

Location: Survivors: A Garden of Glass Flowers

Post Mon Sep 27, 2004 8:36 pm

Online insults result in charges

Online insults result in charges
By Tony Gordon Daily Herald Legal Affairs Writer

Lake County officials have charged a 68-year-old Indiana man with sending harassing messages in computer chat rooms to a woman he once dated.

Paul Swinford of Highland, Ind., surrendered Tuesday on a warrant charging him with harassment through electronic communications.

Lou Archbold, an investigator with the Lake County State's Attorney's office, said a 60-year-old Zion woman Swinford once dated filed a complaint with his office last month.

Archbold said Swinford had been using a variety of screen names and signing in to computer chat rooms he knew the woman frequented.

Swinford made a series of insulting and derogatory remarks about the woman in messages he sent to her in the chat rooms, Archbold said.

She obtained a court order of protection on March 10, 2003, that prohibited Swinford from contacting her in any way, Archbold said.

The woman suspected Swinford was the author of the messages, Archbold said, because they made references to information only he would know about her.

Archbold obtained subpoenas for account information about the screen names and traced them all to Swinford.

An arrest warrant was issued last week for Swinford. Archbold said he telephoned Swinford and asked him to turn himself in. Swinford did so, and Associate Judge Victoria Martin released him on a signature bond after a court hearing Tuesday morning.

Swinford's next court date is Oct. 25. He faces up to three years in prison if convicted, Archbold said.



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flowerchild

Post Tue Sep 28, 2004 6:24 am

THREE YEARS IN PRISON? Wow, Im stunned...thats all he did was insult someone in a chat room? That must have been some kind of insult. (because I know of some people who have had guns pulled on them who only got 3 years out of it, thats why Im so stunned.)
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Motheroftwo

Posts: 2075

Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2003 1:37 pm

Post Tue Sep 28, 2004 8:44 am

It sounds like 3 years is the maximum sentence if he's convicted, but I doubt he'll get that, not for a first offense.
Mother of two
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paranoid

Posts: 1915

Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2003 1:03 pm

Location: in the library

Post Tue Sep 28, 2004 9:48 am

I'm guessing in some ways threatening messages, and also violations of the PO. But about time.
Virginal Cindy the upright and stalwart
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Southern Girl

Posts: 284

Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2004 2:56 pm

Location: Survivors: A Garden of Glass Flowers

Post Tue Sep 28, 2004 7:43 pm

There's probably more to it than what's in this story, but it is heartening, at least.

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