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Case Number: 2:21-cr-00198-NT
Judge: Nancy Torresen
Court: United States District Court for the District of Maine (Cumberland County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office in Portland
Defendant's Attorney: Caleigh Milton
Description: Portland, Maine criminal defense lawyer represented Defendant charged with cyberstalking.
Jonathan Trayes, age 34, was involved in a brief relationship with the victim which ended when Trayes was arrested for violating conditions of release after the victim accused him of physical assault. Trayes eventually pleaded guilty in state court to domestic assault with priors, violating conditions of release and aggravated assault and was sentenced to five years of incarceration with all but two years suspended followed by four years of probation.
Beginning shortly after his release, Trayes began posting embarrassing, sexually graphic images and videos of the victim online, including identifying information including the victim’s name and what he believed was the victim’s address. The harassment continued for more than a year, leading the victim to reach out to the FBI.
The FBI conducted the investigation.
CYBERSTALKING AND AIDING AND ABETTING, 18:2261A(2)(B) and 2261(b)(5) and 2
(1) Travel or conduct of offender.—
A person who travels in interstate or foreign commerce or enters or leaves Indian country or is present within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States with the intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate a spouse, intimate partner, or dating partner, and who, in the course of or as a result of such travel or presence, commits or attempts to commit a crime of violence against that spouse, intimate partner, or dating partner, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).
(2) Causing travel of victim.—
A person who causes a spouse, intimate partner, or dating partner to travel in interstate or foreign commerce or to enter or leave Indian country by force, coercion, duress, or fraud, and who, in the course of, as a result of, or to facilitate such conduct or travel, commits or attempts to commit a crime of violence against that spouse, intimate partner, or dating partner, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).
(b) Penalties.—A person who violates this section or section 2261A shall be fined under this title, imprisoned—
(1) for life or any term of years, if death of the victim results;
(2) for not more than 20 years if permanent disfigurement or life threatening bodily injury to the victim results;
(3) for not more than 10 years, if serious bodily injury to the victim results or if the offender uses a dangerous weapon during the offense;
(4) as provided for the applicable conduct under chapter 109A if the offense would constitute an offense under chapter 109A (without regard to whether the offense was committed in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States or in a Federal prison); and
(5) for not more than 5 years, in any other case,
or both fined and imprisoned.
(6) Whoever commits the crime of stalking in violation of a temporary or permanent civil or criminal injunction, restraining order, no-contact order, or other order described in section 2266 of title 18, United States Code, shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than 1 year.
Cyberstalking is the use of electronic communication to stalk or harass another person. It can take many forms, including:
Sending threatening or harassing emails, text messages, or social media posts
Posting embarrassing or personal information about the victim online
Tracking the victim's online activity
Creating fake online profiles or websites to impersonate the victim
Hacking into the victim's computer or social media accounts
Threatening to harm the victim or their loved ones
Cyberstalking can have a devastating impact on the victim's life. It can cause them to feel fear, anxiety, and depression. It can also make it difficult for them to work, go to school, or maintain relationships. In some cases, cyberstalking can even lead to suicide.
If you are being cyberstalked, it is important to take action. You should:
Document the stalking. This includes saving emails, text messages, social media posts, and any other evidence of the stalking.
Tell someone you trust about the stalking. This could be a friend, family member, therapist, or law enforcement officer.
Change your passwords for all of your online accounts.
Block the stalker from contacting you on social media and email.
Report the stalking to the police.
You can also get help from a number of organizations that specialize in cyberstalking. These organizations can provide support, resources, and legal advice.
Here are some organizations that can help with cyberstalking:
The National Cyber Security Alliance: https://www.staysafeonline.org/
The Cyber Civil Rights Initiative: https://www.cybercivilrights.org/
The National Center for Victims of Crime: https://victimsofcrime.org/
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN): https://www.rainn.org/
If you are being cyberstalked, it is important to remember that you are not alone. There are people who can help you.
Outcome: Defendant was sentenced to 36 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release.