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Computer Crime - Harassment/Impersonation Computer Crimes, Hacking

Discussion in 'Criminal Charges' started by JAT1, Feb 10, 2019.

  1. JAT1

    JAT1 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    I recently was elected to our HOA board and there are a couple of people pissed off about it. 3 days after the election, I received an email from one of them with a strange message that appeared they were responding to an email from me. I had no idea what they were talking about because I hadn't send them an email. I looked further down in their email and there appeared to be an embedded email where someone had impersonated me, sending them an email from an email address that closely resembled mine. The email had been signed with my standard email "signature." I honestly can't tell if someone actually sent it to them or if they created it and just inserted it into their email. It bothered me and I decided to just wait to see what happened. I did tell them I didn't send the email though.

    A few days later, another email was sent out to our entire HOA email distribution under an email address that again resembled a different email address I use. They "signed it" using my standard email signature again but with a note below that said I didn't approve the message. It was derogatory in nature.

    A few days after that I received an email from an HOA member who was very open as to who they were, basically telling me to "pound sand" and to send any correspondence to some address in another state. Then they proceeded to send me no less than 8 vulgar messages in less than an hour. They put every HOA member on those emails. It was embarrassing as Hell!!!

    Another message compared me to Hitler and being a Nazi. I kid you not!! I'm really a nice person and am not an extremist HOA person - not at all and haven't even had a chance to get my feet wet in the HOA.

    I'm 65 years old and don't need this crap but I will not resign. I was just shy of being voted in unanimously so I know the neighborhood supports me. It's just these 3 individuals. I've turned over the anonymous emails to a computer expert and they feel confident they will be able to trace them back to who sent them.

    I know that Texas does have harassment laws, including computer crimes. My questions are:

    1. Should I call the police and if I do, will they do anything about it?

    2. What do you think I should do? Seek a restraining order for the one person who sent all the excessive, vulgar messages?

    3. Do I have any kind of case at all for impersonation if I find out who sent the anonymous emails?

    This is so damned ridiculous! I can't believe how childish some people are. I would normally ignore it but honestly I'm beginning to wonder if I should fear for my physical safety. These people are nuts!
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    That is a decision you must make under your own auspices.

    You should do what YOU wish to do, but don't act upon the advice of strangers!


    Unless you can PROVE who sent the alleged emails, there's very little anyone can do.

    I suggest you seek the counsel of a lawyer KNOWN to you licensed to practice in Texas.
    For example, I am a lawyer licensed to practice in Texas, but you'd be a fool to take legal advice from any stranger.

    That is precisely what I would do, ignore this nonsense, and resign from the HOA immediately.

    I would then sell my property and purchase a home where no HOA board treats a homeowner as if he/she was a renter.

    This is just another reason why it is foolish beyond belief to me why people insist on buying property to be oppressed by some lousy, two bit, thieving developer.

    Ahh, but you can be as smart as you desire in the USA, or as stupid as a sheep.
     
  3. JAT1

    JAT1 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    army judge,

    Thank you for taking the time to answer. I really wasn't counting on "strangers" to tell me what to do. I just wanted to get a feel for what various attorneys might say.

    I can prove who the vulgar emails were from. I'm having the other examined by a cyber security expert.

    Selling my house and moving isn't an option. Honestly, there have been zero problems with the HOA in here. They are very reasonable and have been incredibly accommodating to everyone. The problem is there are 3 people who thought they were going to get elected and run the show. They are the only ones that are pissed and are now taking this out on me. Up until today I was the only one they were basically harassing. Now they are beginning to target another board member.

    I will not quit. I've never quit anything in my life and I'll be damned if a couple of nuts will run me off. That's exactly what they want.

     
  4. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    That is entirely up to you, mate.

    Stay safe out there.

    The world is replete with scum, vermin, psychos, and felons.



    stayinlane.gif
     
  5. mightymoose

    mightymoose Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't bother with law enforcement. What you describe is a civil issue and if there is anything to do an attorney should be able to review all the details and see what is appropriate. It really depends how solid the evidence is that pins the emails on one person.
    My suggestion is to ignore it. If you don't reward the behavior with a response it should go away on its own.
     
  6. JAT1

    JAT1 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Mightymoose,

    Texas does have statutes that encompass harassment and impersonation via electronic communication. Is it your opinion law enforcement will do nothing about this? We have the vulgar emails and absolutely know who wrote them - the person didn't even try to hide their identity. An initial review by a computer person indicates that they are the same person that sent the emails pretending to be me. However, we're going to have a cyber security expert take a look at it to confirm.

    I know it seems minor but it's still a crime and honestly, I'm not sure one of these nutcases won't come after me.

    Can you elaborate on this being a civil issue?

     
  7. mightymoose

    mightymoose Well-Known Member

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    It is my opinion you will have great difficulty proving who sent the messages. It is far easier to choose not to respond than to pursue legal action. I doubt law enforcement would invest any resources into this issue.
     
  8. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    In some of the less populated regions of our Republic of Texas, you bet your bippy this would get investigated, especially if one is connected.

    In the larger cities of our Republic, say San Antonio (Bexar County), this type of THING would be ignored.
     
  9. JAT1

    JAT1 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Ok, thank you very much for your help. Not sure which course we'll pursue but might take a wait and see approach to see if anything else shows up. I'm just not sure I trust these people not to intensify the harassment.
     
  10. JAT1

    JAT1 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    army judge,

    We live in Bexar County but in a small town. I guess we'll just see what happens for awhile. Thank you!

     
  11. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You'd still deal with Bexar County Courts At Law, or District Courts sitting in San Antonio.

    I'm sure your HOA has an attorney on retainer.

    You might wish to speak with the attorney in your official capacity as a board member, assuming the majority of the board endorses the visit.

    I'd bring it up in executive session, and see what the other members suggest.

    I'd also investigate liability insurance based upon your official position as a board member.

    If the violent messages stop, the lawsuits often commence.

    Always protect yourself.
     

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