Tuesday, December 18, 2012

10 years for stealing cell phone pictures.

Yesterday we established that it was a bad idea to take, store, and show people nude pictures on one's cell phone.  At least I think we established that.  What about stealing nude pictures off someone else's cell phone?  That is also a bad idea.
ABC News reports that Christopher Chaney has been senteced to 10 years in prison for hacking into the cell phones of woemen and posting on the internet or otherwise transmitting nude pictures stored  those cell phones to people.

The most famous victim of Mr. Chaney's hacking is either Scarlett Johansson, Mila Kunis or Christina Aguilera depending on whether singers are more famous than actresses.

One might think that given that Ms. Johansson, Ms. Kunis, and Ms. Aguilera have all appeared in movies, music videos, or magazines, in various states of undress that having these pictures published is not a big deal to them.  However, Ms.  Johansson made a videotaped statement that ABC describes as "tearful" in which she said she had been "truly humiliated and embarrassed" by publication of the photos she took for her then-husband Ryan Reynolds.Renee Olstead, another actress/singer whose photos Mr. Chaney hacked, said that she attempted to kill herself when the photos were leaked. 

Moreover, Mr. Chaney did not limit himself to celebrities.  He also hacked two women he knew.  He evidently sent nude photos of one of the women to her father.  I think we can agree that is a pretty mean or low thing to do.  The women  wrote in letters to the sentencing judge that their lives have been irreparably damaged by Mr. Chaney. One woman describes herself has having anxiety and panic attacks.  The other woman is depressed and paranoid.  I hope time heals those wounds.

Anyway, United States District Court Judge S. James Otero. a George W. Bush appointee for those who keep track of such things, found Mr. Chaney's actions mystifying.  "It's hard to fathom the mindset of a person who would accomplish all of this," Judge Otero said. "These types of crimes are as pernicious and serious as physical stalking."

Interestingly, Judge Otero sentenced Mr. Chaney to more years in prison than prosecutors recommended.  Prosecutors recommended a six-year sentence.  Judge Otero imposed a ten-year sentence.  If my math is right that is a 67% increase over what was recommended.  Still, Mr. Chaney could have been sentenced to 60 years in prison if he had been convicted of all the charges against him.  In that sense, Mr. Chaney got off easy.

What od you think Mr. Torvik, is the sentence too long, too short, or just right?

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