ONLINE SCAMMERS AND VIGILANTE/ “ANTI” DATABASE
Compiled by Derek W. Logue of OnceFallen.com
Created 1 July 2017; Last Update 11 Oct. 2023
This database was created to assist in identifying known vigilantes and vigilante groups in the US (and some abroad) to help registered citizens be aware of online groups who have been known to threaten, harass, intimidate or even attack people on the registry or those connected to people on the registry. Each of these groups are listed because they have been reported to this website as “Anti” sites. It is recommended that any interaction with any of the people or groups listed here should be properly documented and reported to the authorities.
This database is a work in progress, thus is not comprehensive. The primary focus for this page is NOTABLE, ORGANIZED efforts to harass, to threaten, cause harm to, or to scam registered persons, meaning that individual vigilantes will be added only on a case-by-case basis. Many articles on these people and groups can be found at Absolute Zero Unites, my anti-vigilante blog. Vigilante Groups and Scammers are listed alphabetically.
NOTE: There are numerous online vigilante groups out there, far too many to list. For the sake of assisting Registered Persons, the primary focus is on groups or individuals who have specifically targeted Registered Persons, not just those who entrap individuals in online “sting operations.” Not all of these Sting Groups attack Registered Persons, but some do.
Oftentimes, you cannot rely on law enforcement to address the harassment. See my article on protecting yourself from vigilantes for ideas on how to address vigilante scum.
ANONYMOUS AND THEIR VARIOUS “SEC” SUBGROUPS
Various subgroups (referred to as a “-Sec” within the group, such as the now defunct “LulzSec”) of Anonymous target Registered Persons and Anti-Registry activists. Often, their attacks consist of flooding a social media page with asinine comments and threats of violence. Occasionally, the Anonymous “Sec” group may engage in campaigns to remove social media pages (often with a hashtag prefix #Op- succeeded by the name of the operation, example: #OpDeathEaters) or engage in Dedicated Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks or post videos intended to be menacing. They are often videos comparing themselves to superheroes set to powerballads or read statements while wearing the silly Guy Fawkes masks while garbling their voices. Since these groups tends to attract like-minded mentally ill losers who are socially awkward, living in their parents’ basements, and have short attention spans, these attacks are rarely sustained for extended periods of time out of fear, depression, or boredom when their tactics do not work. Still, they may be temporary annoyances if you are a heavy user of the Internet, especially social media, especially Facebook.
“BECAUSE LIBERTY”/ PUNISHER SQUAD: VIGILANTE, WASHINGTON STATE
Affiliated Name: Curtis J. Hart, Last Known Address- 203 N 6th Ave, Kelso, WA 98626. (360) 442-1878
CLICK HERE to see more about Curtis J Hart
DETAILS: Curtis J. Hart is a political extremist, an active blogger and self-professed “Libertarian” who, among other hobbies, runs a one-man vigilante group (“Punisher Squad”) that conducts online entrapment operations to name and shame people he claims are “pedophiles”. He has also taken to harassing registered citizens both online and in his community. Hart’s followers routinely harass and threaten anti-registry activists online, and that harassment and threatening behavior has been well documented. But most notably, he is one of a handful of people who are suing the state of Washington to collect info on Level 1 registrants (info not released on the public registry in WA) so he can harass and bully them as well as publicly. If you live near this person and you are a level 1 registrant, you should file litigation to prevent the courts from releasing the information to Hart.
BIKERS AGAINST ABUSED AND NEGLECTED CHILDREN (BAANC): VIGILANTE GROUP, OHIO
Last Known Address: 9413 State Route 99 N, Monroeville, Ohio 44847 (private home owned by Joseph & Pamela Jenkins)
Filed a Form 900 for 2015, claiming 501c3 non-profit status [SEE THE FORMS HERE]
Affiliated Names: Craig Shilling, Laurie Fulk Keller, Rynae Dawson, Lisa Noble, Sara Tuttamore (only possibly), Josh Kaman, Gary Anthony, Malinda M Taylor, Rick Masters, Dustin Evans, Julie Weyandt, Sue Papenfuss McClure, Steve Collins, Lee Bickley, April Keller, Hannah Maynard, Maile Zinn, Candi Noftz, Kurt Knowles, Angela Moll, Jeffrey M Gauchat Jr, Kat Reisert, Duane Cyr, Joan Tennant, Alyssa Holliday, Fred Lesher, Veronica Webb, Kimberly Cole, Brandon Bragg
DETAILS: This group likes to cosplay as a biker gang not unlike similar vigilante groups. They run a 501c3 under the guise of raising money for crime victims. Most of their attacks are limited to online activity (primarily via Facebook) but some Registrants living in the area have reported offline harassment such as harassment at work and harassment of family members of their targets. At this time, there have been no reports of physical attacks associated with this group but it may only be because incidents could have been unreported or not prosecuted. AZUnites has a report on BAANC HERE.
BIKERS AGAINST CHILD ABUSE: VIGILANTE GROUP, MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
DETAILS: BACA is a worldwide motorcycle organization which is built from both the 1%er and the legitimate biker community. Their intended purpose is to empower abused children but the group has been said to indirectly support the outlaw motorcycle gang image. They have been known to threaten and allegedly even beat up suspected child molesters. “Some guys have a tendency to take the law into their own hands,” one former member says. BACA has attempted to intimidate anti-registry protesters during the 2007 Silent No More Rally in Columbus OH and the 2015 Tally in Tally.
Many BACA Members have been involved in various crimes, including sex crimes (perhaps BACA stands for Bikers Advocating Criminal Assault):
- On December 26, 2007, Mark Lyle Bell murdered Craig Nail at the request of Vera Elizabeth Guthrie-Nail in a murder-for-hire plot arranged by members of BACA.
- On March 18, 2009, the Cyber Crime Unit of the Texas Attorney General’s office announced that David Wayne Garvey, a member of BACA in Houston, had been arrested for possession of child pornography. Garvey was sentenced on March 29, 2011, to 20 years on four counts of “Possession with intent promote child pornography”, Texas Penal Code 43.26(e).
- Two members of the Sam Bass chapter of BACA in Round Rock, Texas, Daniel Rodriguez and his wife Shirley Ann Rodriguez, were arrested on July 18, 2018, for 23 counts of abusing foster children in their care, including indecency with a child and injury to a child.
- Oklahoma BACA member Richard David West, 41, was arrested July 10, 2019 and charged with Lewd of Indecent Acts or Proposals to a Child Under 16. Pottawatomie County District Attorney Allan Grubb said he became aware of the crimes through one of his investigators. Grubb stated “That’s where she met this man, who was introduced to her as someone she could trust. He came as a position of protection for her. Then he ended up becoming her abuser.” West was found to have photos and videos of the 15 year old victim who was introduced to him when she was 12 years old through the BACA referral.
CLEARMYCASE.COM: POSSIBLE SCAM, TEXAS
Many of the other registry reformist websites consider the registry paperwork service clearmycase.com to be a scam. In 2017, a number of RCs in activist communities received letters from Clear My Case, a group based in Texas. Florida Action Committee reported, “Apparently the company is using the Florida Sex Offender registry to solicit registrants, telling them that they “have great news for you!”, “You may be eligible to deregister.” and “you may be eligible to stop reporting to law enforcement as a sex offender” and that for $150 they will review their case to let them know if they are eligible to “deregister”. We suggest you do not fall for this. They are mass-mailing this solicitation to thousands of registrants, 99% of which will not be eligible for removal from the registry. In our opinion, this company is preying on thousands of desperately hopeful and naive registrants who will fork over $150 to be quickly and easily told they do not qualify for removal.Here is a quick questionnaire that you should go through in your mind before even considering their flier:
- Have you received a full pardon from the governor of Florida or the President of the US?
- Have you had your conviction (or withhold) set aside in post-conviction relief?
- Was your offense a “Romeo and Juliet” offense where: (a) it was consensual, and (b) the victim was 14-17, and (c) you were no more than 4 years older than the victim?
- Has it been at least 25 years since you have been released from confinement, supervision, or sanction (whichever is latest) and have not been arrested for any felony or misdemeanor offense since release?
If you are a sexual offender (not predator)* and meet any of these four criteria, you should consult with a licensed Florida Attorney with experience in registration matters, not some company out of another state.
Clearmycase.com sued FAC but the case was dismissed in January 2018. In July 2018, the website reverted to a generic law template. It is unclear if this service was legitimate, but oftentimes, a registry removal procedure costs nothing but time to fill out paperwork.
DADS AGAINST PREDATORS (DAP)
Affiliated Names: Joshu*a Mundy, Jay Carnicom, Jason Chipps, Philip “Flip” Conley, Kate Lombardo
DAP is another online vigilante group from Fremont OH that engages in entrapment busts to post on Facebook and Instagram (and of course sell merchandise and beg for money). Founder Joshua Mundy told the Freemont News-Messenger in January 2020 that he wants sex offenders to be “castrated and executed.” After one of the their entrapment busts led to a suicide, multiple police agencies warned DAP to stop engaging in these busts, to no avail.
On 28 June 2022, three members of DAP accosted a man at a Target store in Winston-Salem, NC. The man drew a gun and shot one of the three DAP thugs, and they assaulted the man. The police has not yet arrested the DAP thugs for their involvement in the violent assault and harassment which could have led to bystanders being hurt. As of 1/15/23, there was an arrest warrant out for:
Warrant for Arrest for Simple Affray NCGS 14-33 on Jay Cameron Carnicom 28-year-old male of 638 Third Avenue Freemont, Ohio
Warrant for Arrest for Simple Affray NCGS 14-33 on Joshua Alvin Michael Mundy 29-year-old male of 1426 Napolean Street Freemont, Ohio
Warrant for Arrest for Simple Affray NCGS 14-33 on Jason Doane Chipps 37-year-old male of 274 Stroud Street Marion, North Carolina. (Chipps turned himself in)
DFW EXPOSURES — See “KTS Predator Hunters”
DONNA ZINK: VIGILANTE, WASHINGTON STATE
Donna Zink, Last Known Address: PO Box 263, Mesa, WA 99343 (509) 265-4417
Last Known Home Address (as of 02/16): 109 N. Rowell Ave., Mesa, WA 99343
CLICK HERE to read more about Donna Zink
DETAILS: Donna Zink is a person who makes a living suing the state over public records laws. She sued her town of residence *and won a case over public records. She’s now suing to collect and disseminate information of level 1 registrants. If you are a Level 1 registrant in Washington, you can file litigation to prevent Donna Zink from disseminating your registry info.
FINDYOUAPLACE.COM: POSSIBLE SCAM, TEXAS
DETAILS: A number of activist websites are warning that a website called Findyouaplace.com, based in Houston TX, is run by the same people who run the ClearMyCase.com website, which is also listed on this page. The website offers a “conditional guarantee” of connecting with housing for a $99 fee. Since it is run by the same people as ClearMyCase.com, activist sites are concerned that individuals may not receive the advertised services (clearmycase.com had multiple complaints from unhappy customers). While it is tempting to pay someone else to make calls on your behalf, it is better to speak to potential landlords directly and be honest about your background. I offer a housing list as well as house hunting tips on this site for free. CLICK HERE to access the page.
#FREE JAMES FAIRBANKS CAMPAIGN VIGILANTE GROUP, NEBRASKA
Affiliated Names: Laura “End Fentanyl” Smith, James Fairbanks
DETAILS: Laura Smith started a group that targeted one Omaha Registrant which grew little attention until James Fairbanks used info from the Facebook page to murder his Registered neighbor in May 2020. Fairbanks mentioned this Facebook vigilante group during interviews related to the murder. Smith then tried using the brief fame to raise funds for Fairbanks. Her growing group also becan a campaign of terrorism and harassment against those who did not believe Fairbanks should br freed. Smith and members of her #FreeJamesFairbanks page made threats of violence against this page and other Anti-Registry advocates. Smith admitted to helping plan the murder but removed the post from the Facebook page before anyone was able to capture a screenshot. James Firbanks pleaded ‘No Contest” to murder on April 2021 and was sentences to 30-70 years in prison. There are still FB support groups bearing his name but there appears to be a rift between some supporters.
KTS PREDATOR HUNTERS (IL) aka DFW EXPOSURES (TX): VIGILANTES
Affiliated names: Kyle Swanson (alas Kyle Guerrido), Courtney Fenner
DETAILS: It is believed but not fully substantiated that Kyle Swanson was once affiliated with Truckers Against Predators, another entrapment vigilante group operating in neighoring Missouri. While operating in Illinois, KTS Predator Hunters has been involved in a number of controversies:
- KTS Predator Hunters was sued by autistic man they tried setting up; while the suit was withdrawn later, the group faced the possibility of ceasing operations and were begging for donations in light of the lawsuit.
- KTS Predator Hunters has been in a dispute with local law enforcement agencies: Kyle Swanson is even trying to run for Sheriff out of his anger *over the local authorities demands he ceases engaging in entrapment operations.
- KTS had been kicked off social media at least once already: Considering how hard it is to get these groups kicked off Facebook, they must have done something quite horrific to have had their previous account deleted. Kyle Swanson is friends with David Rowe from No Peace For Predators, which has posted QAnon propaganda on their own vigilante pages.
- Most of KTS’s “cases” do not lead to arrests or convictions: Even before counties in Missouri outright banned using vigilante group data for arrests, most of KTS Predatror Hunter’s “exposes” went absolutely nowhere; even when an arrest was made, cases were later dropped. Similar cases in Illinois, where KTS now operates, were also dropped due to KTS incompetence.
- KTS Predator Hunters doesn’t mind engaging in risky behavior: KTS set up one of their entrapment operations in the parking lot of a grade school, which alarmed local officials.
In 2021, Kyle Swanson was facing felony charges including unlawful restraint, obstruction of justice, and assault in Madison County, Illinois for his vigilante actions. Swanson was able to have his charges dismissed in Illinois if he agreed to abandon his vigilante group, tke counseling classes, and engage in community service. After vowing to move to Florida, Swanson instead moved to the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, where he stated a new group called “DFW Exposures.” For nearly two years, Swanson posted new entrapment operations under the alias “Kyle Guerrido” and obtained the support and assistance from Courtney Fenner, co-host of a small-time “true-crime” podcast named “A Nefarious Nightmare.”
In 2023, Swanson attempted two GoFundMe fundraisers, one claiming his equipment was damaged in a sting operation (later admitting that was not entirely true), and money to go to Hawaii to entrap “a sailor”. But in September 2023, DFW Exposures posted a message they were shutting down operations and Fenner posted a GoFundMe on Swanson’s behalf begging for donations for legal fees. (We assume he’s being sued for harassment). Swanson claims he’s moving to Florida to help start an organization helping disbled vets learn to Scuba and hopefully leave online vigilante violence once and for all.
LAUREN’S KIDS: VIGILANTE GROUP, FLORIDA
Last Known Address: Ronald Lee Book, 18851 NE 29th Ave. #1010, Aventura, FL 33180
Affiliated names: Ronald Lee Book, Lauren Book, Claire VanSusteren, Ivette Diaz, Randal R. Perkins, Manny Kadre, Charlie Fernandes, Keith Kenner, Beth Rosenstein, Rockelle S. Matza, Stanford Blake, Bruno Dede, Diane Philbin
DETAILS: Lauren’s Kids doesn’t typically directly go out and directly harass registered persons, although Ron and lauren Book are primarily responsible for multiple incidents of harassment against this website. Instead, their efforts to harm registrants is done primarily through rule of law. The 2006 Lauren Book Child Safety Ordinance is responsible for the 2500 foot residency restrictions in Miami/Dade Co., which forced registrants to live under the Julia Tuttle Causeway and assorted camps in industrial areas since the ordinance took effect. Foundation CEO Lauren Book now sits on the state Senate, and her father Ron Book continues to lobby for tougher laws against registrants. In 2017, Senator Book authored a bill to terminate the parental rights of some registrants (SB1558, which died in committee) and interfere with the ability of some registrants from obtaining jobs as movers (SB336, which was tabled in favor of a similar bill, which passed). Detailed info on other activities of this organization can be found at the Floridians For Freedom Blog. CEO Lauren Book has repeatedly harassed the owner of this website and filed a SLAPP suit in an effort to silence us, but as of June 2020, her suit was tossed out by the Florida 4th Appeals Court. This ruling was upheld by the Florida Supreme Court in January 2021.
NO PEACE FOR PREDATORS: VIGILANTE GROUP, JACKSONVILLE, FL
Names Affiliated with this group: David C. Rowe, Britt P. Warden, Peter Mason, April Butler
DETAILS: This group primarily operates either on Facebook or around Jacksonville (passing out fliers and harassing local registrants). NPFP briefly made headlines in 2011 when they threatened a Registered Person who bought an ice cream truck. Founder David Rowe made headlines again when he cried to the media after those he targeted online turned the tables on him. (The media pointed out Rowe was recently arrested for assault at that time.) This group occasionally takes their harassment campaign online through social media; by their own admission, they’ve been known to target innocent people. In 2020, NPFP began posting pro-Trump and QAnon conspiracy propaganda, including congratulating Kyle Wittenhouse for shooting a registrant.
OFFENDEX/ SORARCHIVES/ BARCOMPLAINT.COM [Chuck Roderick & Brent Olsterblad]: SCAM & VIGILANTE GROUP, ARIZONA
Last known address: 34522 N. Scottsdale Road, #120-467, Scottsdale AZ 85266 (UPS mailbox rental)
Affiliated websites: Offendex, SORArchives, Bar Complaint, OnlineDetective, CourtKey, Official Service Dog Registry
Names affiliated with this group: Charles “Chuck” Roderick, Brent Olsterblad, Tracy Helsig, and Sarah Shea
SUMMARY: Roderick and Olsterblad run numerous websites designed to extort money from desperate registrants or former registrants; these sites are designed to dupe victims into believing paying them hundreds will remove names and pictures from the private registry websites. After their victims pay for removal, the Offendex group opens up new websites, then demand payment for removal from these new websites. Those who refuse to pay, as well as attorneys, reporters, Roderick’s ex-wife and her new lover, and the families of registrants have all been targeted. Roderick and Offendex associates lost two major cases, one for $3.4 million, and one for $300,000, but Offendex continues to operate under numerous websites, continuing a campaign of extortion and harassment of the site owners’ victims. The Offendex group also runs Facebook pages of their extortion pages and routinely create fake accounts to generate simulated interest in their websites. This group is reportedly under FBI investigation.
DETAILS: In a 2013 report, AZ Central reported, “Two operators of a network of Arizona websites targeting sex offenders have a 20-year history on the losing side of criminal and civil court actions, legal records show. Chuck Rodrick, 51, and Brent Oesterblad, 52, who have worked together since 2000, both pleaded guilty to fraud charges in the early 1990s and have since faced a variety of lawsuits, judgments and tax liens, court and other records show. Rodrick had a minor role in what authorities described as one of the biggest-ever Ponzi-scheme cases in Alaska, which left him facing a federal lawsuit in 1996…Court records show Rodrick’s birth name is Charles Gilson. Court records show he legally changed his name to Rodrick in 1993 after being convicted as Gilson in Maricopa County on a felony charge of intent to defraud. Gilson was one of four suspects who pleaded guilty to selling cable- television descramblers. Gilson was sentenced to 18 months’ probation and ordered to pay a fine. Gilson told the court he was a self-employed travel broker, buying and selling frequent-flier miles. Three years later, Rodrick was hit with a civil judgment for his part in a frequent-flier mileage fraud case in Alaska that cost investors as much as $50 million [World Plus]… Oesterblad pleaded guilty to mail and wire fraud and spent 10 months in a federal prison for his part in an unrelated frequent-flier scam in the early 1990s. Federal authorities said Oesterblad, along with his siblings, bilked now-defunct Pan American World Airways out of $100,000 by obtaining awards in the names of bogus customers. After his 1992 sentence, Oesterblad was hit with a $306,000 federal tax lien. Records show the lien was released in 2001.”
AZ Central also reported: “In a unanimous verdict, jurors hit Valley businessman Charles “Chuck” Rodrick with a $3.4 million judgment on behalf of three people profiled on websites such as Offendex.com, SORArchives and SexOffenderrecord.com. Rodrick is accused of running an Internet extortion racket that used public records maintained by law enforcement to demand money from sex offenders, harassing those who complained. The jury awarded victims almost $500,000 in actual damages and $2.9 million in punitive damages, agreeing Rodrick defamed them, invaded their privacy, put them in a false light and abused the court system by filing lawsuits against them as a form of retaliation. A Call 12 for Action investigation in 2013 found Rodrick’s sites mined data compiled by law-enforcement agencies across the country and used it to collect money from sex offenders. Operators did not always take down profiles after payments were made, and they launched online harassment campaigns against those who balked at financial demands or filed complaints…Rodrick and Oesterblad, both of whom were convicted on fraud-related charges in the early 1990s, were at the center of state and federal lawsuits. Sex offenders and others named on the websites have accused them of running an extortion racket. Rodrick and Oesterblad are also accused of posting inaccurate or old information and using the threat of exposure as leverage in their operation.”
In 2016, a jury awarded the president of a Phoenix-based aerospace company $325,000, saying Rodrick put him in a false light and intentionally inflicted emotional harm in web postings that accused him of infidelity, having sex with young boys and defrauding the U.S. government, among other statements.
In October 2013, Attorney Daniel R. Warner terminated Charles Rodrick as a client for refusal to pay his legal fees. However, Rodrick continued to publish disparaging information on various websites, including the bar complaint he filed against Daniel Warner — even though the bar complaint (filed in September of 2015) was dismissed on January 20, 2016. The most recent article posted against Warner is posted on BarComplaint.com on June 29, 2017.
The physical address Roderick uses when filing litigation against his victims is also affiliated with officialservicedogregistry.com, a website that allegedly offers licenses for “service pets,” a growing scam across America. The Better Business Bureau’s file on this business states, “On February 1, 2017, BBB requested Official Service Dog Registry substantiate or discontinue offers to sell made on their website. BBB has received information indicating that consumers fail to receive advertised products after they have submitted payment in full. BBB requested Official Service Dog Registry substantiate their offer to sell by providing documentation that shows consumers have in fact received their orders…BBB files indicate this business has a pattern of complaints concerning problems with product/service, advertising/sales and delivery issues. Complainants allege Official Service Dog Registry fails to provide dog certifications after paying for the service on the business website at www.officialservicedogregistry.com.”
In April 2021, Chuck Rodrick was arrested by federal agents and was arraigned for multiple felonies including extortion and fraud. It was noted in STL Today that the FBI had previously tried to indict Rodrick and associates but a previous grand jury failed to indict.
PARENTS FOR MEGAN’S LAW (DBA “The Crime Victim’s Center):VIGILANTE GROUP, NEW YORK
Last Known Address: 100 Comac St, Ronkonkoma, NY 11779 (Business);
Names Affiliated with this group:
Laura Ahearn, 18 Balfour Ln., Stony Brook, NY 11790, https://www.facebook.com/laura.ahearn.77
Steven Bellone, 195 Marcy St., North Babylon, NY 11703, https://www.facebook.com/SteveBellone/
Kate Browning, 25 Malba Drive, Shirley, NY 11967, https://www.facebook.com/kate.maguirebrowning
Kara Hahn, 41 Thompson Hay Path, Setauket NY 11733, https://www.facebook.com/kara.hahn.39
Others with ties to PFML and the legislature:
Eileen Panico, 1869 Ave Louis Kossuth, Ronkonkoma, NY phone # (631) 738-1372
Joann Carignan, 2376 Feuereisen Ave, Ronkonkoma, NY 11779, Born 1954, (631) 580-9156 New or old address: 1995 Julia
Goldbach Ave Ronkonkoma NY 11779-6416
Board of Directors: Andrew Weitz (also member of Weitz/Pascale Law Firm), Bonnie McGee, Elizabeth Prial, Neil Guilmette,
Dorothy M Going, Michael Gunther, David Fish, Mark Baylog
“Champions for Children” “winners”
Brian Pascale: https://www.facebook.com/brian.pascale.3; Wife, Nicole: https://www.facebook.com/nicole.pascale.7
Jason Brezler, https://www.facebook.com/jason.brezler, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2015/11/30/decision-to-force-out-marine-who-sent-warning-ahead-of-insider-attack-upheld/?utm_term=009280f9c17a; http://www.snopes.com/2016/07/07/jason-brezler/ (He is involved in an email scandal similar to that of Hillary Clinton)
James Burke, disgraced former police chief serving a prison term for civil rights violations and violent crimes Dean Skelos, disgraced ex-NY state senator Dean Skelos, in prison for abusing his office
SUMMARY: PFML is rather notorious for two big reasons. First, they are solely responsible for creating and propagating the 100,000 missing registrant myth. Second, they’re known for being the only known victim advocacy group in the US that had been granted the authority to conduct registry compliance operations, a role strictly a power of law enforcement. (The contract between PFML and Suffolk Co NY expired at the end of 2016; no word on whether that contract was renewed.) PFML agents have used this authority to harass registrants in Suffolk Co. NY. In addition, Ahearn uses her authority to push for tougher sanctions against registered citizens. Ahearn has also sued those who protest her organization in attempts to deter opposition.
DETAILS: In 2015, the Suffolk County legislature voted to give PFML an extra $25,000, to be taken from the Crime Victim’s Fund(even though PFML is apparently in charge of the county’ crime victim fund, they still need an act of legislature to dip into the victim’s fund. Apparently, the extra $25,000 was needed because their liability insurance increased from $4500 a year to $25,000 a year, likely the result of the numerous lawsuits against them.
In February 2016, the US District Court for the East District of NY ruled that PFML is a “state actor” and can be sued for civil rights violations. The lawsuit stems from a 2013 incident in which PFML employees without a warrant or even a reasonable suspicion their target violated any laws, parked out in front of the victim’s house, “interrogated” him about his address and car, and “followed closely behind” as he retrieved his driver’s license from the vehicle. In addition, PFML is suing this website for challenging the corruption of the organization, leading to this scathing Op-Ed from a retired Suffolk County Supreme Court judge.
PHONY REGISTRY FEE SCAM PHONE CALLS: NATIONWIDE
In recent years, the number of scams directly tied to the public registry has proliferated. Most pretend to be a law enforcement or court agency claiming there’s a warrant for your arrest or you failed to pay fee or missed a court hearing, then demanding money, giftcards, prepaid credit cards, or even bitcoin/cryptocurrency to rectify this issue over the phone (or in some cases, meet in person at a parking lot). These are obvious scams, since police never call you about warrants or take payments in a parking lot or through the computer or by phone.
The following press release from the Idaho State Police (and republished in the media) succinctly describes a common phone scam targeting registered citizens.
Idaho State Police news release
For Immediate Release, Feb. 13, 2018
Contact: Tim Marsano, ISP Public Information Officer, 208.884.7122
News release: Scam on Sex Offender Registrants
The Idaho Central Sex Offender Registry, administered by the Idaho State Police, has been made aware of several attempted scams targeting registered sex offenders in at least one Idaho county and six Florida counties. One scam involves a caller posing as a law enforcement officer who tells the sex offender that they have missing or out-of-date registration information. The caller then threatens that, in order to avoid arrest for failure to register, the registrant must bring a gift/money card to a specified location (other than the registration office). The caller may provide a callback number with a voice mail message that sounds as if it belongs to the local law enforcement agency’s registration office. In another report, the caller says they are with the sheriff’s office and they have a warrant for being non-compliant. The scammer goes on to say that the only way to take care of it without being arrested is go to the store and get a money card and give them the card number over the phone.
Anyone receiving such a phone call should not follow the instruction and should immediately report it to the local sheriff’s office. Note that a cop would never call you to warn you that you have a warrant for your arrest.
PHONE FRAUD SCHEMES GETTING MORE SOPHISTICATED USING REGISTRY DATA: NATIONWIDE
An RC shared a story with IL-Voices on a recent attempted fraud scheme which involved data from the SOR. He had received both an email and text message from his credit card company that there was an attempted charge of $3500 at an auto repair shop which was declined. After confirming with the credit card company it was indeed a fraudulent charge, the card was cancelled and a new card was sent.
Ten minutes later, the credit card company called the man and asked if he had called the company. He told the agent he had not called. The agent replied that as soon as the payment had been declined, a scammer called the company using a phone service that spoofed the Caller ID with the man’s cell phone number. The scammer gave the credit card company information like the Registrant’s height, weight, hair color, eye color, and other information listed on the IL-SOR, but could not provide the secret passcodes.
The Registrant updated his passcode, informing his wife of the changes. Soon, he received a call from what appeared to be the credit card company’s number. When he answered, a woman with a heavy accent said that his card had recently been used in a fraudulent transaction and asked if he had called them about the transaction yet. After the man said yes, the caller hung up. He was certain that was the scammer hoping to get info on the secret passcode.
Credit and debit cards are great for record keeping purposes and they are decent at handling fraud. Here are a few things to remember about using cards:
1. If you receive a text message, or email stating there is a “fraud alert” on your credit/ debit card, call the phone number on the back of the card. If you receive a phone call, tell the agent you’re hanging up and calling the number on the back of the card.
2. Never use personal info or simple, overused passwords (like “password” or “12345”) when making passwords you’ll use to access your account. Never give this info to someone who calls you first.
3. Check your bank and credit card statements frequently. Every bank and credit card company has a website so you can sign up and access the info regularly. Because of problems with postal mail due to COVID and the questionable hires at the top management level, payments should be made online to minimize check theft (bank routing numbers and account numbers are on checks so they can be compromised by thieves).
PHONE SCAMMERS ARE FOLLOWING REGISTRY NEWS TO UPDATE THEIR SCAMS
In 2021, California switched over to a three-tiered registry scheme (a scam of a different kind), so the scammers are already hard at work exploiting the news, as discussed in a Humbolt Co. CA Sheriff’s Office press release:
“As part of this scam, the caller claims they are from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office and tells the victim that due to “new laws”, they are now out of compliance with current PC 290 registration requirements. The scammer tells the victim that they must purchase a pre-paid debit card and make a payment over the phone to come into compliance, or face arrest.
The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office would like the community to know that this is a scam. The HCSO does not charge fees for PC 290 Registration. While law enforcement may contact you regarding a warrant or investigation, we will never demand payment in exchange for dropping a warrant or stopping an investigation. Additionally, no government agency will ask you to mail large sums of cash or pay with gift cards or pre-paid money cards.”
SCAMMERS MAY BE FILING FOIAs TO GATHER MORE REGISTRY INFO
In January 2023, Tammie Lawson of Virginia received a call from a potential scammer claiming to first be with the US Census but later claimed to be with the US Dept. of Labor. The man claimed he had stopped by her place and also described a vehicle she owned as evidence he had stopped by. The Virginia SOR does NOT list vehicle info publicly but they do collect the data. While it is possible the scammer hacked into government DMV records, it is far more likely the data breach was from vehicle information provided to the VA registry.
Also worth noting, the “National Sex Offender Public Website” sometimes lists employer data on states that do not list information on their own websites.
ANYTIME someone calls you claiming to be from any government agency or business, including your bank, tell them you are hanging up and calling back. Hang up, then look up the number online, then call the government entity or business using the number you find from the agency/business website. Never confirm personal info online or agree to send any kind of payment to anyone who calls you.
In short, scammers use many tricks to attempt to make you believe whatever lies they are telling you to make you believe they are legit. While not every scam is directly tied to the public registry, scammers can easily access the registry data or even put in a FOIA request for additional info.
PHONE SCAM ENCOURAGING CITIZENS TO BECOME VIGILANTES
I really hope this does not become a widespread scam because it encourages vigilante violence.
(Source: Logan Jennes. “Scammer urges North Carolina residents to ‘bring in sex offenders’.” Fox 8 WGHP in NC. 10 Oct. 2023. https://myfox8.com/news/north-carolina/scammer-urges-north-carolina-residents-to-bring-in-sex-offenders/)
“The Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office received multiple calls from residents regarding a scam. People say they have been contacted by someone claiming to be an officer from the Lenoir Police Department. The scammer is telling residents that some Sex Offenders are violating their Sex Offender requirements. Residents are being told they’ll receive a $5,000 check if they bring the sex offender into the Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office. Law enforcement will never ask private citizens to take someone into custody, officials said. If you have any doubts, you’re urged to call Caldwell County Communications at 828-758-2324 before you send any money over the phone.”
PREDATOR PATROL/ SAFE ZONE ADVOCACY: VIGILANTE, FLORIDA
Affiliated Person: Judy Cornett
DETAILS: Judy Cornett gained some notoriety in the mid 2000s by starting a group passing out fliers in her community and a few media appearances. She also helped BACA and Absolute Zero Unites (working then under the moniker “Women Against Sexual Predators”/ WASP) in attempting to organize a protest against the Silent No More rally in 2007.
PREDATOR POACHERS: HOUSTON, TX
Names Affiliated With This Group: Alex Rosen
Predator Poachers is yet another small group of online hooligans trying to get their 15 minutes of fame.
Indeed, the teenagers running this group make a few racist comments, and the names of some of the videos have racist underones; For example, one video featuring a sting on an Asian guy was labeled “Ninja Predator” and labeled the victim’s walk away from the group as a “WOK of shame.” Another video of a Hispanic man is labeled “Vaquero Predator.” Reddit users have also complained that this group targets people primarily in the LBGTQ community.
Unfortunately, the Houston news media is hyping up this group by giving them coverage.
Apparently, this group was already banned once by Youtube but has a second Youtube account. The founder of this group, Alex Rosen, complained on Youtube that he was “falsely arrested” for a DWI in Texas around late 2019, even posting a picture of the arrest report. (Note: he was under 21 at the time, and Texas has a lower BAC requirement when someone drinks while underage.) They succeeded in getting my post at AZUnites removed and targeted me for harassment, so I have reposted the info here.
They have also created a website doxxing and attacking OnceFallen.com and posting veiled threats against me on a site that was created to mock another of his victims. He’s also posted directory info about this website so he will be suspect #1 next time there is an attempted hack of my website. I have sent him a cease and desist email after he sent a barrage of emails and attempted to call me 6 times in an 11 minute span on January 23, 2020. He left me a threatening (but admittedly hilarious) voice mail message claiming he has family working at the Department of “Fucking Defense” and will fuck my life up. (He also said he’d send hookers to my house but he didn’t. I was disappointed.)
In 2023, a much fatter Alex Rosen showed up at the house of Dr. Peter Hotez, who helped created the COVID vaccine, to harass him on behaf of the anti-vaxxer crowd. Rosen’s Twitter page (@iFightForKids) is filled with a mix of his vigilante activities and right-wing extremist views, including climate change denial, anti-science, and QAnon conspiracies. As of 2023, Rosen is still posting racist and anti-LGBTQ stuff, mostly on his Twitter page.
SHOALANDA SPEAKS: VIGILANTE GROUP, MUSCLE SHOALS AL
More on Shoalanda Speaks at http://absolutezerounites.blogspot.com/search/label/Shoalanda%20Speaks
DETAILS: Shoalanda may be a sole ” crime blogger” or a group; regardless, Shoalanda Speaks has made a number of death threats against this site, including discussions about posting an “end” to me and doxxing. The person/ group is suspected of being involved in the fire that destroyed my apartment in 2019. Has worked with Clay Keys aka T-Sand, an Escambia County FL sex offender who eventually went to prison for a recidivist offense. Has tried placing pressure on local pols to increase punishment of Registered Persons.
ZACH SWEERS/ ANXIETY WAR: VIGILANTE, MICHIGAN
DETAILS: Sweers has been warned multiple times by Michigan State Police AND the MI Attorney General to stop conducting online sings, which has turned more violent in recent months. The statement from the Attorney General’s Office and Michigan State Police says Sweers’ recent videos have “escalated and demonstrated reckless conduct.” One video shows a confrontation with an alleged predator that turned into a physical fight over a set of keys. Another involved a man with a gun. Sweers called the owner of this website while making veiled threats. Sweers was sued by at least two of his victims; he settled out of court.
INACTIVE VIGILANTE AND VIGILANTE GROUPS
Below are groups that have targeted Registered Persons in the past but are inactive as of the most current update:
- ABSOLUTE ZERO UNITED: A sister blog of Perverted Justice, but has been dormant since mid-2013. I suspect the nail in the coffin for this group was the failed attempt to sabotage the 2012 RSOL Conference in Albuquerque.
- ANONYMOUS: From time to time, various “Anonymous” Operations confused anti-registry activism with “pedophile activism” and began targeting Anti-Registry websites, but Anonymous hacking raids are largely a thing of the past and these operations no longer garner the attention Anonymous sects hoped to achieve. There are, however, vigilante groups still uusing the Anonymous name or the “-Sec” suffix.
- PERVERTED JUSTICE: The group made notorious from their appearance on the much-maligned ans controversial Dateline show “To Catch a Predator” announced, “At the start of 2019, we’ve decided to cease active decoy operations.”
- ROBERT WAYNE LEE, aka “BOOPAC SHAKUR: Inspired by the Dads Against Predators group, Lee started his own stings. While the investigation is ongoing, early reports said Lee was shot and killed after he accused a teen of being a “pedophile” and punched the teen in the face. The Oakland Co (MI) prosecutor’s office statement noted that, “Mr. Lee’s methods often impeded law enforcement’s ability to conduct a proper investigation and gather evidence that would be admissible in court. That meant that some individuals Mr. Lee identified could not be charged with crimes, or that cases against them were dismissed. In two instances, Mr. Lee was investigated for and charged with crimes for destroying property of individuals who were not the target of his “sting” operations…”
- VALERIE “VALIGATOR” PARKHURST: Parkhurst was rather notorious among anti-registry groups as a particularly nasty stalker, but passed away on July 27, 2016.