A Connecticut man who used the internet to engage in a campaign of harassment and intimidation against a Drexel University student was sentenced Thursday to two years in prison, officials said.
During the 2015-16 school year, Jacob Waitze, 23, himself a Drexel student, impersonated the victim in a variety of internet forums, suggesting that the victim was either a pedophile who needed help or someone interested in receiving child pornography material. The campaign, the U.S. Attorney's Office said in a statement, came after a personal dispute with the student.
Waitze, of Southbury, Conn., used personal details about the victim, including name, email address, and photographs to harass the student. As a result, the victim received multiple unwanted emails, both from people offended by the posts and from some who wanted to engage the victim in conversations about child porn.
"In taking on the victim's persona online, Waitze used the internet as a weapon to carry out his personal vendetta," said U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain. "By giving others the impression that this victim was interested in child exploitation, Waitze caused the victim a great deal of harm. Today's sentence demonstrates that my office will hold cyberstalkers accountable when they misuse technology in this manner."
Waitze, who was charged May 4 with cyberstalking in an information, was also sentenced to three years' supervised release.